In 2013 I co-founded a foundation called Assortimens together with Michel ten Buuren en Erwin Bos. With this foundation, we run a FabLab inspired workshop for people with autism. In our current location in Oldenzaal, Zuid Berghuizen, we have a digital fabrication workshop with a laser cutter, 3D printers, CNC mill etc. We also have a large music studio/bandstand and creative atelier.
In order to offer our participants challenging projects we try to connect with and reach out to local businesses for assignments and projects. Projects we take on should be without deadline or pressure, so no tasks that are part of the primary course of business, but the ‘nice to haves’. This is quite challenging, but also very rewarding, as discussed in this episode of Humanity Rising. In 2020 we finished an Escaperoom at the Palthehuis Museum in Oldenzaal, which was a collaboration between the Palthehuis, BSc thesis students of Creative Technology, University of Twente and Beeldbouw. Other projects include collaborations with Unipro (floor printing machines) and AMMON.
Because of our unique participants, knowledge and technical expertise, we also participate in (academic) research. In 2020 we received funding from ZonMW to start a project organising 3D printing of face protection equipment to battle Covid-19. We also participate in the Design Your Life project chaired by the University of Twente and the HAN. We also regularly host students from the University of Twente for projects on Co-design for special-needs groups or BSc thesis projects.