‘I fight for equal opportunities by working with young people' 

Robin Remmerswaal - ​​​
Advisor Community Investment, is one of four children and a volunteer

Growing sense of inequality

I’ve been given lots of opportunities in life, but I know that’s certainly not the case for everyone. I could ask my parents, brothers and sister anything at any time, such as how to write an application letter or a CV. And we were always able to take part in out-of-school activities, such as school trips, but some of the children in our neighbourhood couldn’t.'

‘While I was studying history, I learnt that problems in society nearly always have a long prior history. And that there are lots of external factors that lead to inequality. These are factors that are often outside our control as individuals. I think that’s unfair. That’s why I like to give back to society, mainly to reduce the inequality of opportunity.'

Working with young people

‘I’ve worked as a volunteer since I was young. From football trainer to organising children’s summer camps. I’ve got fond memories of my time as a volunteer. The happiness that children radiate when they play team sports or when they go on camp for the first time is unforgettable.’

‘Via NN, I’m also a careers coach for young people. Last year, for example, I mentored 3 boys from a deprived area. They could ask me for advice about career choices or for help with writing their CVs. It was a temporary project, but we did forge a connection. And now I’m working on my next project: I’ve recently become a buddy for a young person with a physical disability. The aim is to create a fair opportunity for that person on the labour market too.' 

‘So, I do a lot for and with disadvantaged young people who have limited opportunities to change their situations. I believe that young people are an important source of solutions to society’s problems. Young people and children are less prejudiced and as a result think beyond the confines we often set as adults. If you put a group of young people together, they come up with really creative ideas. It’s also their futures we’re working on.'


Social engagement

‘NN offers me the opportunity to pursue my personal mission in my work, too. Along with my colleagues, I look at how NN can make a contribution to a better society. That’s about more than taking our social responsibility. We call it conscious ‘engagement’ because we want to do more for the society we’re part of as a business.'

‘With our NN Future Matters programme, we help people who need assistance with their finances or their opportunities on the labour market. We also help children who grow up in difficult financial circumstances. I organise the volunteering activities along with NN’s social partners. And I try and mobilise as many colleagues as possible to join in.’

A better world

‘I know from my own experience how much satisfaction I get from volunteering, so I try and encourage my colleagues to get involved. It gives you new insights because you step outside your comfort zone, it makes you resourceful and simply a more complete person. But the most important thing is that you’re helping people who really need it. And what’s more, you can do your volunteering at NN in your working hours – provided you make the proper arrangements of course.'

‘It’s incredible that you have so many opportunities at NN, both professionally and on a social level. I’ve got a varied and challenging job and the chance to make the world a little bit better every day. And the cherry on the cake for me is noticing that a person genuinely benefits from what we as volunteers are doing.'