Once December hits, it’s usually full-on holiday madness. Anyone and everyone is obsessed with finding the perfect gift to give. But what about those of us who are focused on giving back to the world and the community, rather than giving gifts? This year, we want to focus on giving back as well as giving to each other. So, in addition to bringing you our annual gift guide, we’re also profiling our amazing Ro’Heroes who are giving back this month.
We’ve got tons of charity rides coming up to support causes that mean a lot to us, and we’d like to highlight the badass, charitable Ro’heroes who are making them happen. So, without further ado, let us introduce you to one of our dear Ro’riders who just so happens to be organising an amazing charity ride this month, Noor van de Kraats. Keep reading to find out about the charity she’s supporting in Amsterdam on December 22nd: Prinses Maxima Centrum.
Join Noor on December 22nd with Joey!
Hi Noor! Firstly, thank you so much for putting together this Charity Ride, and thank you for chatting with us today. Could you introduce yourself?
I am 25 years old, and I will turn 26 on the 21st of December, the day before the Charity Ride. I have lived in Amsterdam for six years, and now I live with my twin sister in Oost. At the end of August, I went to my first Rocycle class with my siblings, though I’ve been road cycling for about five years now. I started going on rides with my father initially – he’s a frequent cyclist and will be joining my Charity Ride – and now I also cycle with my boyfriend. I did the Alpe d’HuZes, another charity ride, back in 2016 with my parents and family friends, and I finished the Barcelona Triathlon with my brother and sister last October. I want to do the Paris Triathlon next year and hope someone will join me! I graduated with an MSc in Business Administration and now work in sports sponsorship. When I’m not road cycling or spinning at Rocycle, I do weight training at the gym four times a week, though skiing is the sport I really love most.
You really are sporty spice, aren’t you? Now for the reason you’re here: your Charity Ride! Can you tell us a bit more about your charity?
The charity I have chosen is the Prinses Maxima Centrum, a care and research centre for children with cancer. The Foundation of the Prinses Maxima Centrum will receive this money and will use it for sstructural support for the center. Some of the money they receive from donations will be used to create special facilities for parents and some will go to the research institute. The foundation aims to raise funds for additional facilities to support the children and families affected by cancer. The foundation also supports education in the field of pediatric oncology.
What a terrific cause! It’s one we’re sure everyone could get behind. What does the charity mean to you? Why did you choose to support it?
I chose organisation because my 7-year-old cousin, the son of my mother’s younger sister, was diagnosed with a brain tumour in the summer of 2018. 80% of children that receive this diagnosis die within the first year. Fortunately, he is still with us. However, he is not expected to make it beyond five years after diagnosis. When he was first diagnosed, he was treated at the Prinses Maxima Centrum. It is a really nice place, with amazing facilities and very caring staff. However, it is still a hospital where very sick children are treated. No child should be there. Hopefully with more research and money, treatment will develop and improve the life of these children. Our cousin is still a very happy boy, although he is experiencing difficulties in his daily life. We admire his optimism and resilience.
Oh wow, that is so heart-breaking. We are so sorry to hear that, but it is really incredible that you are supporting your cousin and children like him. Obviously this cause is important to you, but are there any other causes that are close to your heart?
In my family, we have done quite a bit of charity work. My brother and I have helped Syrian refugees in Amsterdam with learning the Dutch language. My mother is an artist and teaches at a centre for adult cancer patients for two hours every week. Beyond that, family is really important to me, so that is why we do so many things together, as it unifies us in the battle our cousin is facing.
What a wonderful sentiment. Your attitude is so inspiring. How would you recommend others find a cause they’re passionate about and get involved?
Remember that not everything, such as our prosperity and health, are normal and that you are not solely responsible for yourself. It is good to find something that interests you and that contributes to society. Is does not have to be something big. If you can help even one person, that is something.
Perfect advice – thank you. Now we just have one more question: what does giving back mean to you?
Helping others can be very rewarding. It is great to contribute to something that has an impact on another person’s life. Not everyone is as privileged as we are. Also, it can be very nice to do something with people close to you, and it can unite you. Together, differences can be made.