Interview with Ramona de Vos

Enjoying the little parties in life. That is what Van Geloven can contribute to with its snacks. Unfortunately, such moments are not so commonplace for everyone and everywhere. Van Geloven is happy to contribute to creating a party of some sort where a party is not a self-evident thing, or where the options do not allow for a party. We do that financially, with our employees, and with our products.

During the past few years, Van Geloven has built up a meaningful relationship with two national charities: De Zonnebloem and the Make-A-Wish Foundation the Netherlands. Both charities are about facilitating a party where it is truly necessary, each with their own goals and target groups. In 2015, we started sponsoring Make-A-Wish Flanders in Belgium.
De Zonnebloem focuses on people with a physical limitation that results in social isolation. The foundation interconnects people, ensuring social life. The Make-A-Wish Foundation focuses on children  with a life-threatening conditions who deserve a care-free party day. Make-A-Wish offers them just such a day, fully tailored to their individual wish. This helps them forget all the trouble that their condition causes them. Enjoying life to the full, also for those who cannot take it for granted: that is what the people at Van Geloven feel is so important. They are happy to make a small contribution, even if it is just for a while, to help with the challenging circumstances that these people are confronted with. Van Geloven’s objective is to organise a party for every day of the year and, with its 250 parties in 2014, the company is well on its way to achieving this objective.

In addition to corporate sponsoring, Van Geloven also has local sponsorship policies. Each site is granted an annual amount and a number of products to support local charities and personal sponsor initiatives of the employees.


Ramona de Vos, responsible for all sponsoring within Van Geloven, explains: “When making sponsoring choices, we feel it is very important that it is close to our employees’ lives. This applies to the local and personal initiatives, but certainly also to the corporate sponsoring such as De Zonnebloem and Make-A-Wish. We want to do more than just give money. We want to give our employees the opportunity to ‘do good’, for example assisting in activities of these foundations as a volunteer.”

Cora and Flora on the Zonnebloem ship
Ramona’s enthusiasm is clear when she talks about the activities that Van Geloven helps organise and facilitates. “The ‘I Love Holland’ Christmas party on the Zonnebloem cruise ship has become a tradition that not only the guests, but the volunteers and crew too, look forward to. Adriaan, one of the guests on the Zonnebloem ship in Cologne, recounts: “After the fantastic holiday on the ship, Joke is now going to day care on Mondays and Thursdays. She loves going there and it gives me a bit of space to breathe because then for a few hours I don’t have to pay attention to Joke and make sure that I don’t hear any unwelcome sounds. She is collected on those two days at 9:30 a.m. by a wheelchair van and brought home again at about 5 p.m. Ramona goes on to say: “Last year we started a World Cup event for the Zonnebloem kids on the beach at Hoek van Holland. It was a huge success. In the afternoon, we went down to the beach on beach wheelchairs and in the evening we supported the Dutch team. It was a fantastic day for the Van Geloven guests and volunteers who keep on reporting to us enthusiastically to find out how they can contribute.” The guests were also enthusiastic about this event. Peter recounts on the website:

I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the event that you organised with the Zonnebloem. I had a wonderful afternoon and, in my circumstances, that is a very good thing.
I do have to mention Cora. What a spontaneous, sweet woman she is. The way she comes across on TV is how she is in real life. Once again: thank you!  Regards, Peter

.” Ramona makes an effort for the sponsoring activities with heart and soul. “It feels good to be working with charities and doing good deeds during work time. It doesn’t require much effort, in fact it energises you.” And other Van Geloven sites noticed this. In 2015, Mora Production will be organising its own afternoon at the movies for the Zonnebloem. This follows on from the Tilburg branch who organised one in 2014. And the volunteers from the Maastricht Mora Plant treated 150 Zonnebloem guests from the region to a great afternoon at the movies with a croquette to round things off at the end.
Since the collaboration was concluded between the two directors (of De Zonnebloem and Van Geloven), Van Geloven has facilitated more Zonnebloem parties with money, products and people.

Hotel Heppie Mierlo
In addition to sponsoring these national charities, all Van Geloven sites have a sponsoring budget at their disposal for supporting local charities. The Maastricht plant, for example, supports the local Ronald McDonald house. The football tournament for the disabled is sponsored in Tilburg, and the site in Helmond is going to support Hotel Heppie in Mierlo financially and with products. “And of course we also sponsor various activities with our tasty snacks”, says Ramona. “All regular employees are entitled to propose a local charity where Van Geloven facilitates the party with snacks.”

A total of 245 local sponsoring proposals were honoured in 2014. 133 of this total were personal initiatives of employees. Van Geloven plants have sponsored local initiatives 112 times, partly with money and partly with products (more than 2,700 boxes of snacks). “In addition to this, we have been able to provide the Tilburg Food Bank with around 10,000 boxes of snacks in 2014, because even people who have to turn to the Food Bank for help should be able to enjoy a party every now and again”, Ramona reckons.



Ruud, a Van Geloven volunteer: “A completely different world than the daily routine of an office job.  A Zonnebloem day is quite an experience. It’s wonderful to see how everyone enjoys themselves and has fun.”