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Queen Mathilde visits causes close to her heart

Copyright by World Economic Forum / Boris Baldinger

Resuming her agenda after the Christmas break, Queen Mathilde of the Belgians visited a cause close to her heart. 

On 11th January 2022, the Queen travelled to Herne, in the Flemish Brabant province, to visit MeeGaan and t’Bruut. 

MeeGaan is a non-profit that has the aim of welcoming people with disabilities, giving them the chance of developing their skills and using those to find a place on the job market. 

During the visit, Her Majesty met with staff members, tutors and donors of the association, as well as watching some of the sessions that were taking place during her visit. 

Afterwards, Queen Mathilde went to t’Bruut, a bakery that is part of the network of work places that cooperate with MeeGaan. The bakery, founded in 2019, has already hired 7 people from MeeGaan, that are employed both in the shop front and in the back. 

The aim of MeeGaan is to take individuals with disabilities and, based on their individual inclinations, help them acquire the necessary skills to make it easier for them to integrate in the “regular” job market, according to the non-profit’s website. 

The finding of a job, in turn, helps them grow and develop more and more autonomy from their carers, which serves the dual purpose of alleviating the carer’s workload and strengthen the individual’s confidence. 

For this specific reason, Meegaan has developed a series of businesses that employ people from the program (the bakery and shop, but also other ventures, such as a cafe, a restaurant and a meetings centre), but it also seeks the collaboration of businesses outside their own bubble. 

Queen Mathilde has long been a champion of the cause of employing people with disabilities and making society a more equitable place for all. She has visited countless associations that work towards this goal in her years as a Royal.