The riots that took place nationwide – including in our own city of Eindhoven – recently have dominated the headlines. Rioters have been arrested on charges of criminal damage and vandalism after cars and bikes were set alight, shops looted and bricks thrown. But we want to show the positive side. Here is a run-down of just some of the examples of kindness, generosity and selflessness that have appeared since the riots.
Volunteer clean-up operation
Ergon, a company responsible for cleaning Eindhoven’s public spaces, received several requests from Eindhoven citizens who wanted to do something about the rubble left by rioters. Ergon sprang into action on Sunday evening after the riots and, together with a team of local volunteers, returned the Septemberplein and station area to a safe condition by the early hours of Monday morning. A team of another 40 volunteers arrived early again on Monday to morning to help further.
Station piano replaced
The white piano that sits in the city-side entrance to the train station was destroyed during the rioting. But thanks to generous donors from Eindhoven, it has already been replaced. One of the first songs to be played on the new piano was Bobby McFerrin’s ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy’. A spokesperson from NS says, ‘We are so happy. The station belongs to the city, so it is nice that the new piano also comes from the city’. The damaged piano will go on display in the Railway Museum.
PSV donation drive
Several entrepreneurs had their businesses looted and destroyed during the riots. In response, Eindhoven’s local football team, PSV, set up a donation drive in collaboration with beer company, Bavaria. Named ‘Glas voor Glas’, the drive invites people to bring their empty beer bottles and crates to the PSV stadium. Bavaria promises to double the statiegeld (the money you receive from returning drinks bottles) raised and donate it to entrepreneurs affected by the rioting. To say thank you, PSV will give all donors a six-pack of Bavaria’s alcohol free beer.
Thousands raised for damaged bar
D’n Hertog, a bar opposite the train station, was badly damaged by rioters. Rioters destroyed flower displays, knocked over heat lamps and set containers on fire. The bar was a popular place for music students to perform live. La Tuniña, a local students’ music association, quickly set up a fundraiser for the bar’s owner, Linda Thijssens. Within two days, they had already collected 15,000 euros. ‘This is overwhelming and heartwarming,’ Thijssens says.
Source: Omroep Brabant
Community thanks police
Eindhoven Police of course played a central role in shutting down the riots. As a show of thanks, police officers have received an outpouring of gifts from the local community. They showed a photo of cakes, chocolate and thank you cards that had been delivered to the station on Monday on their Instagram account. A banner bearing the words politie, names NL, dank! (police: on behalf of the Netherlands, thank you!) was also erected outside the police station.
Shop owner donates crowdfund
A few kilometres north in Den Bosch, Maaike Neufèglise’s Primera store was destroyed by rioters. A video of her discovering the damage went viral across the country. In response, crowdfunders donated more than 110,000 euros to help pay for the damage. Neufèglise insists that she will not need so much money to repair the damage. She therefore says ‘I want to pass on everything that I don’t need to other people with a warm heart’. The remaining money will go to help other entrepreneurs in Den Bosch affected by the rioting.
Source: Omroep Brabant
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Written by: Rachael Vickerman