INTRODUCTION

Welcome to Fairspace's 2023 Annual Report!

2023 was marked by growing our team, scaling our work and exploring innovative and co-creative approaches to creating safe and inclusive spaces for all.


As a rising leader in the sphere of social safety in the Netherlands, 2023 was also a year of learning and reflection for us as a team and organisation. We saw our influence grow and took that as an opportunity to bring critical issues and voices to the table. We focused on balancing a steady scale-up of our core services with an exploration of new ways to activate and engage our networks.


At the core of all of Fairspace’s work and achievements in 2023 were the people that drive and make it all possible. We want to extend a big thank you to all those who have contributed to our work and our team in 2023 - whether it was an insight shared, time given or a collaboration. Together, we achieved some impressive milestones and overcame challenges with resilience and determination. Looking ahead, we remain committed to our mission and we are excited about the opportunities that lie ahead. Thank you for your continued support and dedication!


Our Mission and Vision

We want to live in a world where everyone feels safe, included and respected. Period.

We get there by inspiring social change at every level: through lobbying, awareness-raising and community activation.

Our approach is creative, inclusive and innovative so that everyone is equipped & empowered to create meaningful impact.

One person, one action, one transformation at a time.

How we get there

To achieve this, we focus on prevention and education.


Facilitate

workshops

and training

Inform

policy

Work with

leaders to

create positive culture shifts

Educate

Design

solutions

to end

harassment

Impact in 2023

4000+

trained on bystander intervention

team and company leaders trained

1,100+

community co-creators engaged

100+

student associations

engaged in training or developing a safety policy

30+

5

largest cities in the Netherlands and national government advised on policies and legislation against harassment

200,000+ in-person REACH

245,000+ ONLINE REACH

knowledge

Before our workshop
After our workshop

96%

85%

I KNOW what disrespectful behaviour and street harassment looks like

AWARENESS

Before our workshop
After our workshop

98%

4%

I am AWARE of different strategies such as the five Ds to safely intervene

Confidence

Before our workshop
After our workshop

84%

41%

Although more than 90 of participants came into the training willing to intervene their confidence to do so more than doubled

Reaching our goals

After years of slow but consistent growth, in 2022 the Fairspace core team (made up of three people at the time) set ambitious goals for the our organisation for 2023. Here’ what we accomplished throughout the year:

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#1 Develop and sell new products and services packages and approaches

In order to create the biggest and most meaningful impact, we need to be responsive and adaptable to new needs and demands from the Spaces in which we work.

  • Asses Create Train Act Sustain (ACTAS) methodology: we guided our first series of workplace clients through this approach, starting with a deep dive into company culture, moving through curated content and tailored trainings, and wrapping up with a practical and actionable roadmap for long-term success.


  • Community co-creation: we responded to an increased demand for co-created solutions to safer and more inclusive communities and sporting activities (see our Nike Community Impact Fund, OCW and SZW activity summaries).


  • Measuring our impact: we kickstarted a serious focus on measuring the impact of our work in communities and workplaces, using both conventional tools like surveys and innovative approaches like gamification.
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#2 Consolidate, standardise and organise internally

Smooth-running and efficient processes means more time to focus on our impact. That’s why in 2023 we made key decisions on organisation-wide tools for our team, freelancers and trainers to use to streamline projects, processes and communication.


  • We developed policies on HR (both performance management as well as onboarding processes), DEIB and Safety, and financial administration.
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#3 Implement bolder, clearer marketing and branding

With a growing team and increased visibility, Fairspace needed to re-think our brand voice, colours and positioning and to co-create a re-brand that was more representative of our core values and ambitions.


  • We introduced a Creative Team next to Fairspace’s Core Team. The Creative Team, consisting of web developers and designers, graphic designers and social media experts took some major steps in 2023 towards this goal, including doing a full Fairspace re-branding, development of new website and curation of social media content that helped to elevate our position as thought leaders in the social safety sphere in the Netherlands.
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#4: Target corporate sponsorships to help subsidise our community work

Our community work taps into the core of Fairspace’s values and DNA. In 2023, we began exploring ways for company sponsorships to support our community work, while fulfilling companies’ own HR or CSR objectives.


  • Fairspace enlisted the support of a strategy advisor to develop targeted messaging and reach out to potential corporate partners to explore sponsorship opportunities. In 2024, we will follow-up on this effort by prospecting scalable relationships with interested and affected organisations and networks.
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#5 Grow team and install a new Supervisory Board

In order to create the impact that we wanted to achieve, expanding our team was key.

  • See chapter on team-related updates
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#6 Increase overall budget

  • Our budget more than doubled from EUR 231,810 (2022) to 484,933 EUR

Fairspace in the Media

Ongewenst gedrag bij het corps (of de kerstborrel): dit kun je ertegen doen

Na meerdere artikelen over wangedrag bij studentenverenigingen ontvingen we verhalen van lezers die zelf grensoverschrijdend gedrag zagen gebeuren.

Je hoeft geen boomlange kerel te zijn om straatintimidatie te stoppen: ‘Dit kun je trainen’

Ook als je het eng vindt om in te grijpen kun je als omstander altijd íets doen als je getuige bent van seksuele intimidatie op straat.

Social media snapshot

In 2023, we reached more than 245,000 people!

We launched some exciting social media campaigns to engage our communities and network, including:

Meet Fairspace trainers series

Quick Tips: on topics like self-care and mental health

Orange the World 2023

#DoeMeeMet5D

Launch of 3-year #DoeMeeMet5D programme

Fairspace hit a major milestone in 2023. In a strong signal of the Dutch government’s commitment to Fairspace’s work and vision, the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science (Ministry OCW) awarded us a 3-year grant to expand our work and reach diverse communities throughout the Netherlands. The programme #DoeMeeMet5D kickstarted in March.


Multi-part programme:

Scaling up bystander intervention training

The programme ignited a major scale-up of our bystander training program,which had been previously implemented in the four biggest cities of the Netherlands. With the support of the Ministry, we kickstarted the expansion of our activities to Enschede, Tilburg, Maastricht, Groningen, Wageningen and Nijmegen in its first year, adding another 6 cities to this list in 2024 and 2025.

Pop up events

We organised pop-up events to inform the public, such as people shopping in the streets, students during their introduction weeks, or beach visitors, about harassment and bystander intervention in small targeted conversations in public space!

Online digital and immersive learning

Campaign video

The campaign video will function as a stand-alone product as well as an introduction to our online learning platform.

VR experience

In 2023, our Creative Team also worked hard to set the scene for the development of our VR environment, developing and validating 5 scenarios to present users with various ‘bystander dilemmas' as they navigate through the experience. The VR experience, much like the campaign video, will be further developed in the coming 2 years as both a stand-alone product and as integrated into the online learning platform.

In 2023, we laid the foundations for our multimedia component of the programme, including a campaign video, an online platform and a VR bystander experience. The majority of 2023 was creating the concept and initial content for these activities.

Online learning platform

The online learning platform will offer an opportunity for learning about harassment and bystander intervention in an interactive and digital way. In year 1 of the programme, we developed the site blueprint, and we created a foundation and structure of which we will use the design and development of the platform.

Community co creation

#DoeMeeMet5D also includes 3 in-depth co-creation projects where each year, we will dive deeper into the experiences of a particular, often marginalised, community in public space. In 2023, we focused on the experiences and needs of girls with a bicultural background playing sports in public. The project worked with a total of 50 girls and young women, and 20 coaches, neighbourhood safety professionals and youth organisers in Utrecht Overvecht and Amsterdam West. We conducted two Safety Walks and a participatory action research session. The intervention prototype resulting from these activities will be finalised in 2024.

Safe and Inclusive Workplaces

The Dutch media landscape has been marked by a significant increase in awareness surrounding issues of (sexual) harassment in the workplace. High-profile scandals reported in the media have underscored the urgent need for organisations to prioritise creating safe and respectful environments for all employees. This heightened awareness has led to a substantial rise in requests for training and advice on addressing workplace harassment.


Our dedication to promoting a culture of respect and equality has positioned us as a trusted partner for organisations seeking expert guidance and training programmes in navigating the complexities of addressing workplace harassment. We focus on effective prevention and intervention strategies as essential components of fostering a healthy and productive work environment.

As the demand for workplace harassment training and advice continues to grow, we remain steadfast in our commitment to supporting organisations in creating environments where every individual feels valued, heard, and empowered to thrive.


Toolkit Aanpak straatintimidatie

In May 2023 Fairspace and Emancipator launched a new Toolkit for the Municipality of Utrecht. The toolkit is created for organisations and individuals that want to open a conversation on street harassment with the people they work with, such as youth workers, community workers, law enforcers, teachers and students. The toolkit consists of a wide array of workforms that can be used as conversation starters, reflection exercises and unconscious bias checkers. You can also find background information and useful links to learn more. In the fall of 2023, we also started providing workshops specifically on how to use the toolkit. In the training we transfer a basic workshop with which you can get started yourself. We also go into use of the toolkit and, for example, dealing with resistance.


EXPLORE

THE TOOLKIT!

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Men 2.0

Fairspace partnered with Dona Daria for the ‘Men 2.0’ project. Fairspace facilitated a series of co-creation sessions with men in Rotterdam. In the sessions, we discussed various themes related to men's emancipation. The participants shared what it means to be a man on the street, as well as their experiences of being bi-cultural men and boys having to deal with racial profiling. Both men and boys feel judged by onlookers, but above all, they feel unheard and unseen!

Bystander s Dilemma

Men expressed their willingness to intervene when witnessing harassment. However, the presence of weapons makes direct intervention unsafe. As a solution, we discussed safer approaches like the 5Ds.

Perpetrators

Perpetrators target both women and men. Older people are susceptible to ATM robberies, while young people grapple with drug-related issues. Online street culture is also marked by insecurity, especially because of fear of so-called exposure.

Victimhood

Boys often become victims of street intimidation during nightlife, facing risks like stabbings and gunfire. They live in fear of unjust harassment by the police and strangers, often feeling unheard as victims.

Boys as a Problem

Youth 'loitering' remains a concern, highlighting the lack of spaces for young people and parents to come together. More activities are needed to curb the phenomenon of 'hanging out' on the streets, as we strive for a more inclusive and safe society for all.

Count Us In!

We partnered with Nike to launch Count Us In!, a project designed to create spaces where bi-cultural girls and young women feel confident, included and empowered to play, sport and connect. Fairspace worked with community sporting organisations and municipality partners to explore everything from street lighting to opportunities for positive behaviour shifts, with the perspectives and experiences of young women and girls driving it all. Count Us In! was supported by The Nike Community Impact Fund, managed by the King Baudouin Foundation.


EXPLORE THE STAKEHOLDER MAP!

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Erasmus+

We were invited by Status M, a community organisation based in Croatia, to facilitate part of a week-long retreat with young people from around Europe. Wichita goal of igniting cross-cultural dialogue and exchange, we facilitate sessions on bystander intervention and conversations about other important related topics.


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New Videos

We developed and launched our first bespoke series of educational videos on street and workplace harassment. Each scenario is contextualised to the Netherlands and showcases one of the 5Ds in action and was incorporated into our training material.


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Let’s Talk!

Let's Talk! is a card game for young people aged 14-24 to talk and learn about sexual reproductive health and rights that was launched in April 2023.


Let’s Talk! was the outcome of a highly co-creative process, where young people and youth leaders in Burundi, Colombia and the Netherlands played a central role in co-defining, designing and developing the card content, design and gameplay.

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Outline stack card

One of the main achievements of this process was that it was highly participatory and inclusive of continuous direct input from the target groups themselves. This led to a final prototype of the game and facilitator’s guide that was rooted in the lived realities and perspectives of young people, increasing ownership and long-term potential for sustainability. Together with being inclusive of the target group, the close collaboration of the core design team (Yaga, Mesa Comunitaria, Fairspace and Share-Net’s Colombian Hub member, ProFamila) ensured that diverse voices and perspectives were integrated into every step of the process.

Anti-Racism training

In summer 2023, Fairspace was invited to submit a proposal for, and awarded, a one-year tender by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment. The programme explores safety in the streets and in sport clubs, in relation to street harassment, racism and discrimination.

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30 -50 anti-racism

workshops

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An intensive round of co-creation and input sessions in Amsterdam, Utrecht, Rotterdam and Tilburg, is followed by the development of a bystander intervention training focused on anti-racism, recruitment and Train the Trainers of anti-racism trainers, and facilitation of 30-50 anti-racism workshops in these cities.


M&E and Learning

With the support of VSBfonds, we collaborated with Atria kennisinstituut voor emancipatie en vrouwengeschiedenis to conduct a process evaluation of our most requested Stand Up against (street) harassment training.


The evaluation report shares insightful outcomes on our bystander intervention training's effectiveness and impact.

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A similar evaluation will be conducted in 2024 by our partners at DSP-groep to measure the impact of our bystander intervention in the workplace training.


In addition to these evaluations by external partners, Fairspace set up an Monitoring and Evaluation system with impact tools for each of our activities. Learning and best practices will receive more attention in 2024.

Donors and partners

Thank you to all of our donors and partners in 2023 whose generous support is bringing us one step closer to making spaces safe and inclusive for all!