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Cultural spring in Maastricht

Go out and discover local cultural gems!

Stichting Meet Maastricht
21 maart 2018 tot 21 juni 2018
jongeren, volwassenen
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Cultural spring in Maastricht

Go out and discover local cultural gems!

afbeelding van Justyna Kaminska

Ingediend door:

Justyna Kaminska

Ik zoek meedenkers over deze vraag: 
Which communication channels can we use (and how) to increase the long-lasting impact on our target group, to increase the chances that the participants come back for more activities in the future?

Wat ga je doen?: 

The goal of Stichting Meet Maastricht is to bring closer together the young internationals (mostly university students but also immigrants and refugees) and the local culture and heritage of Maastricht. Spring in Maastricht is a beautiful time, perfect for going out and discovering local treasures. We want to organize a series of outdoor and indoor activities - tours, guided museum visits, workshops, urban games, bike rides, runs, and so on - for the internationals, so that they can truly interact with their temporary home, the city of Maastricht, and enjoy its beautiful and unique heritage. We want to get in touch with local experts from cultural institutions and schedule around 12-15 cultural activities (at least one for each week of Spring), which we will promote among young internationals and offer to them either for free or for a discounted price.

Young internationals in Maastricht are a very significant group of inhabitants  - 8,952,MU students (55,9% of the total number in 2016-2017 plus other students plus immigrants, together over 10% of the whole population. Also, they are a very dynamic group, with new exchange students arriving in each semester. As results from the research we conducted in Autumn of 2016, young internationals are genuinely curious about Maastricht, looking at the city often as tourists, but they come across obstacles while trying to connect with the city and its culture (mostly the linguistic barrier and the lack of centralized and reliable sources of information). We are the only initiatve in Maastricht that is trying to help them by actually organizing cultural activities just for them (always in English) on a regular basis, and by doing that together with local experts to provide the highest quality. We believe that increasing cultural participation among young internationals benefits not only the participants but also the city itself - we help local cultural venues to reach out to new audiences, we improve the city's image, and we increase the chances that the students will feel at home here and as a concequence maybe consider remaining in Maastricht after the graduation (brain drain and a gap between students and the city are major problem individuated both by UM and Gemeente Maastricht). 

We would like to use the subsidy from Fonds voor Cultuurparticipatie for covering the costs of the activities, to promote them (social media, website, printed materials such as posters and postcards), to promote our partners (cultural institutions) and for volunteers' payments. We have a team of four very dedicated volunteers including three young internationals and one experienced local cultural professional, who built a broad network within the local cultural scene and with various student groups and associations. We have experience organizing cultural activities (we have been active as an informal initiative since September 2016 and as a Stichting since August 2017) and well working communication channels, so we can make a big impact on the local cultural scene and make "Cultural spring in Maastricht" a success. We estimate to make a direct impact on around 400 internationals (participants) and indirect impact on around 1500 more (who will hear about the local heritage and become more willing to participate another time).

Hoe ga je te werk?: 

The goal of the project is to increase cultural participation among young internationals in Maastricht. Our target group is big (see: basisinformatie tab), young, dynamic, curious, and we are the force in Maastricht that tackles the challenge to help them integrate into the town. The numbers of internationals in Maastricht have been quickly raising over the past few years, which requires an innovative approach if we want to increase their cultural participation. The innovative character of our project has several facets: 1) we reach out to a new target group, 2) we offer cultural assistance by not only talking about culture, but by actually organizing activities for our group in English and on a regular basis, 3) we get in touch with our target group using by using social media, by designing board games and urban games about the city, by being present at student information market and big cultural events, 4) we co-create the activities with our target group by using feedback from them.

Met wie werk je samen?: 

We are going to work closely with over 10 cultural institutions and local businesses in Maastricht. In the past, we successfully collaborated for example with: Brouwerij Bosch, Bonnefantenmuseum (and Young Office), Marres, Bureau Europa, Tempeleers Mestreech, Maastricht Underground, Stichting 1867, Bisschopsmolen, Rederij Stiphout, The Artist and The Others, Code043, Philharmonie Zuidnederland, InnBetween, and Museum aan het Vrijthof. We create added value by helping them reach out to broader and new audiences, by "rejuvenating" their image and by making them more visible in Maastricht in general. As a result, they are likely to attract more attention among young internationals in Maastricht also after the end of our project. Another beneficial aspect of our collaboration is that we will make both the locals (the experts) and the internationals to actively participate in the tours, games, etc., helping them to interact and to get to know each other.

Wat is verder van belang om te weten?: 

Our plan:

In January and February, we are going to contact local cultural institutions and plan cultural activities with them (museum visits, guided tours through the city and underground, running tours, local food workshops, philharmonic concerts, urban games, etc.). We will sign contracts with each partner to ensure that the activities will take place. We will prepare a plan for each week between 21/03 and 21/06. Based on that plan, we will update the draft budget. We will prepare a dedicated website for the project and design all graphic materials.

In February, we will start promoting the project by using our project website, social media and our newsletter. Later in February we will print all promotional materials and our volunteers will distribute them across the city. The second part of materials will be distributed a week before the start of the project. We will book a photographer and a video-maker for the activities, so that we can prepare visual material from the project. We will use direct marketing (meetings, presentations) next to our regular channels to promote the project.

In March, we will use our website to collect registrations for the activities and to collect participation fees. We will keep track of all registrations, so that we have hard data necessary for the evaluation afterwards. We will collect email addresses of the participants to send them information about activities and to send them our survey after the project. We will use paid online advertising to reach out to a big audience. We will introduce separately each of the cultural partners of the project, so that our audience can use the information them to visit also after the end of the project.

When the activities start, we will keep promoting the project as above, plus we will publish posts from the activities on our blog. Our volunteers will be present at each activity to welcome the participants and to give a thank you postcard to each of them. 

After the project, we will prepare an evaluation including both quantitative data (numbers of activities, partners, participants, their age and nationality) and qualitative data (results of our surveys sent to partner institutions and to participants). We will publish the photos and videos made during the project. We will keep promoting the cultural partners. We will use the feedback to improve our actions in the future.

aantal   activiteit               aantal deelnemers  
3 museum tour 1 75

urban game

5 city tour 125
2 workshop 50
2 concert 50
  TOTAL: 375


We estimate around 400 participants actively joining our activities and around 1500 that will be inspired by our project and will use the information we provide to participate in the local culture on a different occasion.

Wat maakt het project bijzonder?: 

The "Cultural spring in Maastricht" is important for our target group, young internationals, because: 1) it will show them how rich in culture and heritage our town is, 2) it will allow them to participate in activities prepared especially for them, without the hassle of searching for right information about available cultural activities, and without the disappointment when it turns out most of the regular activities are only provided in Dutch, 3) it will give them a chance to actively spend their free time and learn about the city's treasures at the same time, 4) it will give them a chance to socialize with other young internationals, 5) it will give them information about local cultural institutions that they can use in the future, 6) it will give them a chance to join activities which normally might not be affordable for them.

For our organization, this project is important, because it will help us reach our statutory goals on a really big scale. Moreover, it will allow us to attract more participants by lowering the ticket prices for the activities, it will help us promote our foundation overall, and it will give us a chance to build long-lasting relationships with our partners.


We will use the Fonds voor Cultuurparticipatie subside to lower the ticket prices for our activities, for covering the promotion costs of the project, and for the fees for our volunteers. Apart from the subsidy, we will use our own contribution, donations, sponsorships, and revenues from tickets sales (discounted prices) to cover the other 50% of the total cost. See the budget below. The total cost of the project is estimated for €14000.