De Regenboog Groep (The Rainbow Group)
Over the last ten years, the number of homeless people in the Netherlands has more than doubled, climbing to 40,000. The situation is the most urgent in the big cities. This significant increase is mostly due to the shortage of shelters, a lack of movement to assisted living facilities and not enough affordable housing. We are also seeing growth in the group of those who have become homeless for financial reasons. These people are experiencing housing problems because they’ve lost their jobs for example, or as the result of a divorce; most don’t have addiction or behavioral problems. This specific situation causes them to “fall between the cracks” when it comes to assistance. It’s important to help these people find housing so that they don’t become dependent on assistance or see their situation deteriorate further.
In Amsterdam, De Regenboog Groep helps people living in social poverty and offers them opportunities to participate in society once again. De Regenboog Groep manages eight community centers for the homeless throughout Amsterdam. Around 600 people come to these community centers every day to get a healthy meal, hot shower, clean clothes and counseling by social workers. These visitors help keep these community centers up and running. In 2019, around 5,126 people came to these community centers.
De Regenboog Groep also helps people who do not have an official referral (yet) for social assistance or who cannot receive this help because they do not qualify by law or are undocumented. De Regenboog helps them find out which options are available to them and also whether or not a better future is possible in their country of origin, and if so, it helps them with their return.
Because of the corona crisis, all of the homeless in Amsterdam are given a place to spend the night. A good night’s sleep lowers their stress levels and increases the odds of successful counseling during the day. De Regenboog uses this information in its advocacy efforts for a larger shelter, focused on recovery and progress.
Adessium supports the Regenboog Groep community centers because we believe that everyone in the Netherlands should be able to participate in society on equal footing. Our primary focus here is on the homeless. We offer them support to secure accessible community services such as community centers and provide help to improve shelter and counseling options for vulnerable people so they can move on.
About this partner
De Regenboog Groep wants to help make Amsterdam a place where everyone can feel at home, whether they suffer from psychological problems, are homeless, use drugs or are in debt. It encourages everyone to be the best they can be. The organization supports Amsterdam locals living in social poverty by providing a volunteer buddy program, community centers, social work, reintegration programs and more. They do this by making time for and paying attention to each other and forging a human connection.