Princess Máxima Centre and Jaarbeurs: Working together for five years for children with cancer

On 5 June 2023, it was exactly five years ago that the Princess Máxima Centre for paediatric oncology was officially opened by Princess Máxima. As from that date, all children with cancer in the Netherlands are treated at the Princess Máxima Centre and all research into paediatric oncology is now concentrated in Utrecht. Jaarbeurs has been a supporter of the Princess Máxima Centre from the very beginning. Nienke Beek from the Princess Máxima Centre Foundation looks back at the collaboration over the past five years.
Why is Jaarbeurs important for the Máxima Centre? 
The Máxima Centre’s mission is to heal every child with cancer, with an optimal quality of life. We cannot do this without outside support and, therefore, we are always looking for strong partners and contributors that support research into better treatment methods and essential extra facilities for children and their families in the Máxima Centre. Jaarbeurs plays an important role in this, by using its powerful communication channels and mobilising employees, visitors, customers, and the general public.
How do you look back on the collaboration in the past five years?
It is really great to see how the collaboration has developed, with the right focus and attention from both organisations. We are able to communicate the story behind our collaboration better and better. You see that it leads to a real impact: it is appreciated by Jaarbeurs’ s employees, visitors, and customers and this results in more involvement and donations for Máxima Centre’s mission.
“It is really great to see how the collaboration has developed, with the right focus and attention from both organisations.”
Which actions of Jaarbeurs employees in 2023 were the most significant in your opinion?
I was very impressed by the record amounts that were collected during the Holiday Fair and the Kreadoe creativity fair. And I am thankful for the organising teams, who with such involvement and energy set up fund-raising campaigns that are well-suited to these fairs. What I also thought was very special, was the participation of Jaarbeurs employees in the International Month of Child Cancer in September. In support of our campaign, Jaarbeurs employees drew golden ribbons with sidewalk chalk in front of the entrance to the Beatrix Hall. The involvement of employees in very important in the collaboration and really stands out for me.
Which steps could the Máxima Centre take thanks to the contributions of Jaarbeurs?
In the past year, we were able to finance, for example, a 3D printer that makes medication in the form of child-friendly figures. This printer will be taken into use in the second part of 2024. We also nearly completed the construction of four clean rooms. With these clean rooms, we can carry out cell therapy ourselves and perform further research into cell therapy. A completely different example is labradoodle Flynn. We have been able to train Flynn to reduce stress and anxiety of children in the waiting room for an MRI scan. For this last initiative, donations were collected at the About Cats and Dogs fair, so that Flynn could become a structural part of our care. In this manner, we make a difference in the lives of children with cancer together with our partners.

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