The Utrecht Bicycle Factory (DURF) – Utrecht
Getting early school leavers to enter the labour market alternatively
Young people who struggle with theory subjects in mainstream schooling, often leave school early. Without a basic qualification, it is very hard to autonomously find a connection to the regular labour market. The talents and capabilities of these youngsters often remain unused and they risk being excluded from society.
DURF assembles and distributes bicycles. One of their clients is fancy city bike brand VanMoof. DURF offers inverted learning pathways for early school leavers. The youngsters start working ‘on the job’, which often evokes the need to acquire specific knowledge and to complete an appropriate training. VanMoof embraces the social objectives of DURF and has even expressly relocated its assembly activities (back) to the Netherlands in that perspective. AJF’s donation will be used to recruit a job coach and the performance-based loan will be invested in technical equipment for an in-house classroom.
Within DURF, the emphasis is not on labour productivity, but on acquiring labour skills and craftsmanship. DURF wants to increase its impact by coaching 12 young people a year and offering them learning-working path. The company strives to offer 4 of these youngsters a paid job within its own organisation. The other 8 participants get help in finding an adequate education or a regular job.