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BeeBonds signs a solidarity partnership with the United Fund for Belgium

BeeBonds UFB Blog Cover 1

BeeBonds is pleased to announce that it has signed a partnership agreement with United Fund for Belgium to contribute financially to the fight against social exclusion in Belgium.

"Alongside our commitment to biodiversity and the protection of bees (we donate a hive to a beekeeper for every project we fund), social inclusion is another cause close to our hearts. That's why we've signed a partnership agreement with United Fund for Belgium (UFB), which collects funds from businesses to support associations fighting exclusion and poverty. From now on, for each new active investor on our crowdlending platform, we will donate a portion of our fees to UFB", declares Joël Duysan, CEO of BeeBonds.

"We are delighted to have BeeBonds as one of our partners. What we have in common is that we have a very tangible impact on our social and economic environment, by enabling participative financing of meaningful projects - via entrepreneurs for BeeBonds, and via associations for UFB. On our side, this can mean, for example, financing a van for the activities of Pré-Texte, a day centre for adults with mental disabilities, a playground for l'Espoir, a reception centre for children in care or an infrastructure for Cré et Arts, a performing arts workshop for people with disabilities," says Catherine Tricot, Executive Director of United Fund for Belgium.

Find out more about UFB

For 50 years, United Fund for Belgium has played an important role as a trusted intermediary between its donors, in particular international companies with a presence in Belgium, and carefully selected Belgian charities. All funds raised are redistributed exclusively to selected beneficiaries whose projects aim to combat exclusion and poverty by improving social integration throughout Belgium. 

UFB is a member of the Association pour une Éthique dans la Récolte de Fonds (AERF) and In addition to an upstream review of applications, beneficiaries are reimbursed solely on the basis of invoices. Each payment is approved by two members of the Board of Directors and the annual accounts are audited by an independent auditor to ensure complete transparency for donors.

Listen to the BeeBonds podcast with Catherine Tricot, Executive Director of UFB.


Elisa Brevet
Hello Catherine Tricot. Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

Catherine Tricot
I come from the world of communications, and particularly the media, so I tended to work on the commercial side for many years. After that, I was on the other side of the fence, working for a long time in a media agency. Then something extraordinary happened: I launched the 'Sprout to be Bruxelles' movement, which was set up after the Brussels attacks to restore Brussels' image. So it was a great challenge. After that, I worked for a few years at the Brussels Chamber of Commerce (BECI). And then here I am at United Fund for Belgium. I'm very proud and delighted to be working for this great charity, because I can put all my experience in communications and marketing, and my address book, to good use for a great cause.

Elisa Brevet
In a few words, what is UFB?

Catherine Tricot
United Fund for Belgium, or UFB for short, is an association that was set up in 1962, 50 years ago, by American companies that had set up in Belgium and had their headquarters in Belgium. headquarters here and who wanted, as in the United States where United Way exists, to make charity. So it's very Anglo-Saxon and they created UFB specifically to help the most disadvantaged and weakest people in Belgium and to improve social integration in Belgium.

We've been helping people in need for 50 years. Of course, the projects are always in the field of social integration. It can be the disabled, children in distress, the homeless, refugees, single women with children...

We raise funds mainly from companies, but also from individuals. All these funds are redistributed at 100 % to these projects. I'll give you a few examples. It could be specialised cars, vans or minibuses. It could be an improvement to the structure, it could be the installation of a new kitchen or a garden, or it could be hypnotherapy for autistic children, so we're helping to install a merry-go-round... These are really very concrete projects that directly help the beneficiaries in the A.S.B.L. We're never going to finance salaries.

What's very important is to talk about our good governance, firstly in terms of the projects we support. When I say 100 % of donations goes to fund these projects, how do we fund these projects? The non-profit organisations submit a project to us, we analyse them and there are basic criteria that are analysed. If the initial criteria correspond to what we want, the project is submitted to our allocation committee. And that's very, very important. There are twenty or so people based throughout Belgium who visit the associations and projects we support. They will discuss it with the management of these ASBLs to see if it is compliant. It is submitted to the Allocation Committee, which gives a favourable opinion, and then the project is submitted to the Board of Directors, which gives the green light. And then we only pay on invoice.

Why am I saying all this? Because it's important that this whole process is like a due diligence of each project. Every donor knows that every euro donated to this project is well spent on a good cause and a great project. And that's why our donors have trusted us for 50 years.

Who are our donors? As I said, they are mainly companies, and it's very important for their compliance and good governance to know that when they support an association like ours, the money is well spent.

In 50 years we've got to know many, many charities, we really know the world of charities in Belgium. So I'm very happy about this partnership because it's a really new way for us to raise funds. I think we found each other very quickly, thanks to the good governance on both sides.

With each new campaign, with each new investor who invests in BeeBonds, a percentage is donated to the United Fund for Belgium. Once again, BeeBondsi is sure that 100 % of donations will go to projects. We've found ourselves in an excellent partnership and it's a win-win for both of them. We're also delighted to be able to access these funds for our projects.

Elisa Brevet
Thank you very much Catherine Tricot.