World Earth Day

A day to reflect on everything Mother Earth has to offer

As a horticultural advisor and board member of Stichting De Groentedeler, Peter Klapwijk is well aware of the importance to reflect and remember, especially on World Earth Day. “It is good to consider what the earth has to offer us. To remember that you are allowed to be here thanks to the earth. This is the environment where we walk around, where our houses, villages and cities are located. Where trees grow, where lakes are situated and where our food comes from. We are helpless without the earth.” says Peter. “The earth is a great gift that we should never take for granted. We have to take care of the earth, even though we forget about it sometimes.”


Earth brings life

The earth has always played a significant role in Peter’s life. “When I look at the earth, I see a place from which we derive our right to exist. The earth is balanced. There is rain, there is sunshine, there is fertility which makes things grow. I deeply respect everything that can arise on this earth.”

“One of my earliest memories is sitting in a sandpit wearing blue overalls. I come from a family of horticulturists, an old farming lineage. I started my career as a grower, from which I grew out to become an expert in the field. When I stopped growing, after years of practical experience, I became actively involved as a knowledge entrepreneur in the international high-tech agricultural sector.”

As a grower, developer, and in his role as an advisor, Peter understands the importance of treating the earth well. “The earth determines what grows and thrives. This means that you have to work consciously and with deep respect for your environment,” he emphasizes. His considerate vision often makes people say that Peter can think like a plant. That he is intertwined with the earth.


Mother Earth and Stichting De Groentedeler

Just like in Peter’s life, the connection with Mother Earth is of great importance to Stichting De Groentedeler. We strive to raise awareness of everything the earth provides and subsequently share all the vegetables we can harvest with the clients of De Voedselbank.

“I think it is wonderful that we work along with a group of volunteers. These are mostly people who grew up in the city, rather differently from me. While working in the garden, they reconnect with the earth. They see how vegetables grow, work with the earth and the plants, and share the harvest with people who are less fortunate than we are. For a fair and sustainable future, it is crucial to be able and willing to share, and that’s precisely what we do and advocate with Stichting De Groentedeler.”

In a time that has become increasingly individualistic, working in the garden also offers the opportunity to do something meaningful together. With a shared passion for the earth and the vegetables harvested from it, the volunteers are committed to the clients of De Voedselbank, the garden and each other. “Sometimes it is tough to work in the rain, but it is especially valuable to see how everyone connects with each other and how we all engage with the earth. This is the greenest and mentally the healthiest gym that I can think of,” says Peter. “It is a place where people rediscover the wondrous world around them. Where a certain foundation is restored through a newly found connection.”


Caring for the earth together

On World Earth Day, Peter advises people to reflect on the choices they make on a daily basis. Would it be possible to use a bike rather than a car? Can you eat more organically? Do you really need the items you are about to buy? And how sustainable are the products you purchase? By being aware of what you do, you can make a difference in creating a healthier earth.

“You are allowed to enjoy, after all, the earth produces for that purpose too. I enjoy living a prosperous life, but at the same time, I try to be aware of what I eat and what I do. I try to do it in the best possible manner. For example, by eating seasonal vegetables, being mindful of what I consume, and investing in food and materials that are produced consciously.”

At a corporate level, Peter sees countless opportunities. He is involved in the development of greenhouses that can be used as solar collectors, exploring the possibilities of extracting organic fertilizers from animal manure, and emphasizing the opportunities of a hybrid way of cultivation. “It is wonderful to collaborate with nature, but you can also use modern technology for that purpose. It is all about your footprint as an entrepreneur. Are you willing to pay the price for the choices you make? Are you able to clean up the mess you create?”


A vision for the future

“Perhaps even more important than the vegetables we harvest is the connection and awareness that we create with Stichting De Groentedeler. It allows us to make a lasting impact, making it increasingly natural to treat the earth well and share with those around us, especially the less fortunate.”


A gift for Mother Earth

On this day, which is actually the birthday of Mother Earth, Peter Klapwijk invites people to donate to Stichting De Groentedeler. “After all, a birthday is usually celebrated by sharing a gift.”

“I am convinced that without sharing, you can’t multiply. So let’s start sharing today, so we can sustainably help the clients of De Voedselbank to maintain a healthy diet, even when times are financially tough.”

Ready to share? Donate now!