Five years of making an impact with YouBeDo books

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You buy the same books for the same price, but YouBeDo donates 12 percent of the purchase price to a charity of your choice. YouBeDo, an online social book shop, and ABN AMRO have been working together for five years – and have raised almost 250,000 euros for charity.

ABN AMRO employees can order books from YouBeDo using their personal development budget, allowing them to combine working on their personal development with supporting a charity. To mark this partnership’s five-year anniversary, we talked to the initiator Michael van Loenen of YouBeDo.

Sustainable purpose

“We started working with ABN AMRO five years ago when I met Richard Kooloos, Director of Group Sustainability,” says Michael. “Richard told me about the personal development budget that ABN AMRO offers its staff. I thought to myself, ‘Hey, maybe we can link our platform to that budget’ – and so we did. YouBeDo’s social enterprise model is a perfect match with ABN AMRO’s sustainable purpose. Our partnership is a great example of how a social enterprise and a corporate enterprise can make a social impact together.”

ABN AMRO Foundation activities

ABN AMRO employees choose the charity that receives their donation. Michael: “People think very carefully about what cause they want to support with their budget. How great is that – making a social impact by buying books!” Since teaming up with ABN AMRO Foundation, several different charities have benefited. Popular choices are KidsRights, UAF (a foundation that supports refugee students), the Krajicek Foundation and Only Friends sports club.

“My dream is for every ABN AMRO employee to place an order through YouBeDo at least once, and so contribute to one of the social projects. It would be fantastic if we could make a difference like this together.”

‘Remote buddy’

This week ABN AMRO Foundation ordered piles of children’s books from YouBeDo for the ‘Remote buddy’ programme. In the last few weeks of the summer holidays, children and their ABN AMRO buddies will read the same book together, online. We want to help children who have fallen behind on their schoolwork due to home schooling during the coronavirus crisis and to encourage a love of reading.

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