Growing environmental awareness
Growing environmental awareness globally has been a focal point in recent years within De Persgroep for a long time. Even before it started up its revolutionary, environmentally friendly printing works in Lokeren, De Persgroep was already printing on recycled paper. Another pioneering step was the investment in dry offset in 2004, eliminating many harmful chemicals from the waste stream. Energy consumption has also been reduced at the various operating sites. In the Netherlands, besides bicycles, De Persgroep is also considering introducing ecoscooters on the longer paper rounds in 2011. Today, De Persgroep does not make any decision without considering the environmental aspects.
De Persgroep has a long tradition of helping good causes. The first initiative dates from the 1920s with the non-profit organisation ‘Kindergeluk’. This organisation was formed at Het Laatste Nieuws to help underprivileged children in Brussels. In the 1990s, Kindergeluk decided to expand its work and become more professional: the age limit was raised and in addition to Brussels, projects were set up all over Flanders. The organisation and operation of the selected projects were also taken over by around 30 professional organisations.
Other subsidiaries of De Persgroep also have their heart in the right place. Shortly after it was established, the non-profit organisation ‘Levenslijn’ was launched. At first, the money raised went to patients with cancer, cardiovascular diseases, allergies, etc. More recently it has gone to young road accident victims, with the famous characters ‘Zeppe & Zikki’ spearheading various campaigns.
In the Netherlands, journalists from Het Parool set up a highly successful charity about 60 years ago. ‘Stichting Witte bedjes’ raises funds for sick and disabled children from Amsterdam.