Together we make the city!

Stadsmakerscongres Haarlem 2023

On Friday, 23 and Saturday, 24 June, approximately 275 Haarlem ‘city makers’ came together to discuss deepening and concrete cooperation with initiators, developers, civil servants and other professionals. The main venue was Sociëteit Vereeniging, with our three other locations within walking or cycling distance: Parish HH Anna and Maria, Museum van de Geest and Het Noord-Hollands Archief.

‘Stadsmakers’ are initiators, creative and social entrepreneurs who are committed to a more equal, habitable, happy and more beautiful neighbourhood, municipality or city. There are numerous ‘city makers’ who have been contributing to the city for years, in ways both public and discrete. Figures are not known. There is an active App group with almost 170 Stadsmakers in Haarlem. Together they set up social initiatives or work together on worthwhile projects, often motivated by a natural drive. They work from the motivation that we all benefit from the well-being of one another and that this contributes to the happiness of everyone.

Information market

The Stedenband Haarlem-Mutare also participated in this event. On Friday, 23 June we were part of the information market with a stall about our educational program Games for Goals and focusing on our latest educational water cycle board game that we are developing together with four universities of applied sciences from the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Portugal and two NGOs from France. This game project is facilitated through an Erasmus+ grant from the European Union.

Workshop Water game

On 24 June we gave an inspiring workshop about this project in the Binnensteeds community centre. It was explained how we had come up with the game idea with 10 teachers from the five participating countries. How we had developed a game concept for a cooperative board game for the upper classes of primary school with 27 students from the four participating colleges. That concept is now being developed by the collaborating organizations into a fully-fledged game that will be available for testing in the next school year. The workshop participants themselves also designed and played a first draft water board game in two working groups, and their experiences not only clarified their own queries but they will also stand us in good stead further down our project development process.

Dik Bol & Joost Ides

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