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United Way of  the Netherlands was founded on 14 December 2018 to create a lasting, positive change in local Dutch communities. Its aim is to help families achieve their human potential through adequate education, financial stability and healthy lives. United Way of the Netherlands brings together organizations, families and resources required to create such opportunities of better lives for all.

Prior to the establishment of UW NL, a team of volunteers inspired by the UW mission statements piloted Its first project: The placement of refugees with Cordaan, one of the leading health providers in the Netherlands. In close collaboration with the Municipality of Amsterdam, volunteers organised intensive participatory assessment sessions with refugees having professional experience in the health sector in their respective country of origin. Based on this alternative approach bringing all partners together, more than ten long-term unemployed refugees found employment combining this with language classes and on-the-job training plus gaining two days a week work experience.

This innovative approach inspired the newly established UW NL to focus, in close cooperation with the Amsterdam Municipality and a Dutch Partner, Maatschappelijke Alliantie to its attention on refugee women, adolescent youth and long-term unemployed refugees. In addition, given its extensive network, UW-NL attempts to enhance the placement of these target groups in the construction, health, culture and hospitality sector.

On 14 January 2019, the first Board meeting of United Way The Netherlands took place at the Board Room of the van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. Peter Weiss en Steven van Groningen are part of a small board comprising well respected personalities in The Netherlands. 

Based on a feasibility study conducted in collaboration with the Free University of Amsterdam and ABN/AMRO Bank, prospects to raise funds in The Netherlands for a variety of causes look promising.