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News from the VINCI Fund in Belgium

April 2017

The VINCI Fund supports projects that promote the general interest, and is a vehicle for the companies that founded it to curb exclusion in all its forms and thereby help everyone find a place, a role and dignity in our society. In 2017, this Fund will focus on projects that foster “living together”.

The VINCI Fund completed its fifth call for projects on 14 April 2016, with the King Baudouin Foundation’s help, and attracted submissions from 60 non-profits (34 in French, 26 in Dutch).
The topic was “gateways to jobs” and the VINCI Fund committee finally selected 6 French and 7 Dutch applications, awarding them €190,600 in total. These projects, which will roll out in 2017, include one by Chantier, a non-profit, and a soup bar at ‘t Veldzicht, a day centre.

A not-for-profit driving school in Belgium as a gateway to jobs

A driving license is often the main stumbling block on the path back into society, as finding a job without one is even harder than usual. On the other hand, driving licenses are expensive. Chantier, however, has opened Belgium’s first not-for-profit driving school, in Charleroi, mirroring similar initiatives in France. It caters exclusively to people who have been unemployed for a long time, receive social integration allowances or are disabled. The training includes a simulator, where learners can practise before driving outdoors. The VINCI Fund is helping this driving school purchase a second dual-control car for €15,000 and its sponsor is Denise Bytebier, from Cegelec SA, VINCI Energies Belgium.

A soup bar and multipurpose learning centre

At the soup bar in ‘t Veldzicht, a day centre near Bruges, people with disabilities or in vulnerable circumstances can find opportunities to work on fulfilling down-to-earth and straightforward tasks while enjoying the friendly atmosphere. The goal is to enhance this centre, with the VINCI Fund’s support (in the form of an €18,000 grant), by opening three multipurpose learning centres: an equipped kitchen, a small Horeca (hotel, restaurant and café) centre and a home-delivery service. This way, the project will reach more beneficiaries, support them more effectively, and give them a better chance of finding jobs later on. Tony De Roeck, from Actemium, VINCI Energies Belgium, is sponsoring this project.