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Health and social care – Header image (photo)

Health care

Impact measures

In assessing the impact of health care, indicators of ‘quality’ are necessarily more qualitative. Whilst the organisations we finance ‘comply’ with best practice guidance, we especially look for those where the focus on quality of care is embedded into the organisational culture.

As a result of its lending across Europe around 35,000 individuals (2015: 25,000) used facilities at 422 elderly care homes financed by Triodos Bank and Triodos Investment Management in 2016, representing the equivalent of 19 days of care per Triodos Bank customer.

Health and social care – Impact measures (graphic)

Our vision and activities

Percentage of our loans and investments to the health care sector

Health and social care – 9.2% of our loans to the health and social care sector (pie chart)

Loans and investments by subsector

Health and social care – Lending by subsector (map)
% derived from data at the time of publication

Our vision on health care

Triodos Bank supports providers of care services who demonstrate a human-centred approach at the heart of their organisation.

By financing values-based care providers, especially those focused on elderly and special-needs, we can help improve the quality of life for individuals in care and the overall wellbeing of a society in the midst of a transition in how we organise social care.

Quality care

We also see that by focusing on the quality of care, the organisations we finance are better equipped to attract and retain high quality people which has a positive impact for the people being cared for, and the business’ commercial viability.

Our priorities

Given the need to increase the provision of high quality human-centred social care, we focus in particular on funding the creation or development of additional care facilities.

The increasing demand for the provision of elderly care for an ageing society, means we focus our finance on elderly-care facilities. We also concentrate on supporting care services for people with special needs which respond to the challenges and abilities of each individual.

Our activities

The demand for health and social care services in Europe is changing reflecting demographic trends and shifting governmental policy.


Projected old-age dependency ratio

The ratio of people aged 65+ compared to people aged between 15-64 (expressed as a percentage)

Health and social care – Projected old-age dependency ratio (graphic)

Derived from: Eurostat

Whereas every country has its own system for funding health and care services, there is a shared need to increase the availability of high quality care provision.

Case studies


Ringoven in Panningen

What was the challenge for this project?

Panningen, a town in the South of The Netherlands, is home to the Ringoven, a former brickworks. The factory closed in 1989, contributing to a general decline in the town’s quality of life in the following years. Increasingly more social services disappeared from the town. But the listed brickworks was renovated and redeveloped and has been a buzzing meeting place since 2014.

The Ringoven offers space to different social organisations. For instance, there’s an agency that organises work for people with learning difficulties. Day-care and activities are provided for older people with dementia, and there is after-school childcare. A social business, Rendiz, also provides hospitality services and rents out venues.

How is the approach of the project innovative?

The different social and commercial organisations based there jointly carry out and support the Ringoven’s goals. They turn the building into the heartbeat of the town and its surroundings. The initiators of the redevelopment have succeeded in connecting all these organisations with one another. And they have done it in a commercially successful way: the Ringoven – as part of Rendiz – combines hospitality with letting property to social initiatives, and offers day-care activities, all of which generates income. The project is a classic example of innovative social entrepreneurship.

What impact does Triodos Bank have on this project?

Triodos Bank financed the internal refurbishment of the building. But its involvement goes further. Triodos Bank is a key partner of Rendiz, the initiator of the redevelopment. The bank thinks with it about the funding potential of similar Rendiz projects in other parts of the province.

What impact does the project have on the sector?

The great strength of the Ringoven is the housing of organisations from different sectors, such as healthcare, education and hospitality. The project shows that this integrated approach can be successful. A listed building like the Ringoven is expensive to use. Refurbishment into a multifunctional social centre, too, involved a lot of costs. But a monument like this can be profitable if its costs are borne by several parties.

What impact does the project have on society?

The area around Panningen is confronted by different issues, from an ageing and declining population to the decline and disappearance of community services.

The region is not unique in that respect: there are several communities in The Netherlands that face similar problems. But the redevelopment of the Ringoven is a powerful response to them. It contributes to the vitality of the community and social cohesion in the town. The building also serves as a hub and inspiration for other developments. Since the reopening of the Ringoven, different organisations are taking root not only in, but also around, the building. A primary school has now also been established adjacent to the former brickworks. Panningen is alive again.

How does the project share the vision of Triodos Bank?

Triodos Bank contributes to a community’s quality of life. It is committed to increasing individual development opportunities, a caring society, and to strengthening the ecology and environment.

It is logical then that the bank is involved in the Ringoven. After all, the project offers development opportunities to people living some distance to the labour market, education for children, and also contributes to the social cohesion in the town. The hospitality service uses regional and Fairtrade products. And finally, it is a beautiful building – a national monument – conserved for future generations in a revitalised town.


Which challenge was the inspiration for your project?

Centrum Ganspoel’s mission is to supervise people with visual and multiple disabilities in a place which is most suitable for them.

The central campus of Ganspoel is beautifully situated amongst fields, but it is also very remote. We increasingly came to the conclusion that for a group of young people the combination of attending school and staying on the big central campus did not really fit with their capabilities. This group needed to take part in social life, just like young people without a disability: being able to practice sports in a local sports club, go to the bakery on their own, go out for a drink; in short, to take part in everyday life.

That is why we felt it appropriate to relocate this group of young people to the centre of the town Tervuren. This created an opportunity to live in the town centre, within walking distance of leisure facilities and in a street adjacent to the shopping street and church square.

What was so innovative about the way this problem was addressed?

The innovative aspect of this project is in the approach to the target group. Inclusive housing projects for adults have been around for several years. But not for young people. Children from different provinces attend school within Centrum Ganspoel, which means accommodation is usually also required. To deliver the best tailored assistance the project required a tailored infrastructure and a bespoke location.

What was the impact of the company or organisation on the sector in which it operates?

The Welfare sector for people with a disability is currently going through fundamental changes with personal finance being the main focus of attention. At the moment this only applies to adults, but this will be extended to include young people at a later stage. The project is already completely aligned with these changes and was cited as an example by the Belgian Minister for Welfare, Public Health and Family, Vandeurzen, in a recent speech.

What was the impact of the company or organisation on the community?

The town council has supported our project from the start and has cooperated with our team. As well as an active volunteer policy judo instructors from the local club have received information about doing sports with people with visual disabilities. Local businesses offer internships for the youngsters. Local residents and supporters were also invited to the opening of the new housing. The young people involved are now no longer referred to as “the youth from De Pit” but they are actually called by their name, and as members of the association.

When the council was planning mobility works, they consulted with our staff in order to create new footpaths with tactile markings to guide blind people. When installing new traffic lights, they took people with a (visual) disability into account.

The arrival of this group of young people has had an impact on the policy of the council. They have definitely benefited from it, but so have all the other residents and visitors to the town, with or without a disability.

What was the impact of Triodos Bank on the company or organisation?

Triodos Bank trusted us to deliver on the financial part of the project. That meant we could focus completely on the content and added value for our clients.

We are currently starting with a new project, this time on the central campus of Centrum Ganspoel. We are delighted to be able to work with Triodos Bank for a second time. In addition to the social benefits, we would like to make sure the current project is sustainable from a broader perspective, for example with regards to the techniques and materials used in construction.

How does Triodos Bank share the vision behind the project?

Triodos Bank supports the aim of the project: achieving maximum inclusion for people with disabilities. I believe we have succeeded very well. Perhaps total inclusion is still a bit premature, but that is because this is not yet a well-known story in broader society. But the young people we work with are definitely fully integrated in the local community.


St. Elisabeth Nuremberg elderly care home

Health and social care – Case study (photo)

Sabine L. Distler, Manager of St. Elisabeth

What challenge was the inspiration for your project?

We knew from the outset that we wanted to make St. Elisabeth a place which offered the highest quality living and housing facilities for elderly people. It soon became clear that this would require extensive renovation work, particularly given regional regulations designed to improve housing conditions. However our innovative residential concept and our holistic philosophy goes far beyond that.

In concrete terms, this means that we had to address not only legal requirements, such as those on physical accessibility, but also meet our own expectations, which were inspired the latest research on gerontology (the study of the social, psychological, cognitive and biological aspects of aging) and housing. That certainly was – and still is – a challenge. But a good one.

What was your innovation that addresses this problem?

The lives of the residents at St. Elisabeth in Nuremberg should be determined by them as much as possible. For us, it goes without saying that this requires a strong social environment, close contact with other people and help with day-to-day tasks.

So, our first question was how can we create living space that allows elderly individuals to determine how they live? We had to eliminate all barriers, and not just in a physical sense, such as removing obstacles in washroom areas using ergonomically designed basins and walk-in showers with grab rails.

In addition, we removed all visual barriers. We did this using a special colour and light system that helps with orientation, particularly for people with dementia, promoting their sense of well-being and making them feel secure. We also chose a wall covering that both looks great and has a special structure that enables visually-impaired people to find their way outside using recognisable features as a guide.

We have also focussed at all times on our employee’s situation, since our holistic approach includes them too. We want them to feel comfortable as well and be able to provide unhindered support and care.

What impact has Triodos Bank had on your business?

Having a bank that is so interested in the content of what we do is new to us. In addition to working together at a business level, there is a personal level too. Triodos Bank believes in our concept and that makes us feel good. And of course, it was Triodos Bank that made it possible for us to realise our project at this scale and with this level of detail which is so important.

This included the attention we pay to using environmentally friendly construction materials and paints, as well as finance. We also have a sustainable approach – ultimately we hope to set a good example in the care sector and improve it for the long term. This means we share the same values as Triodos Bank and puts us on an equal footing as partners because we want to make something happen together.

What impact has your business had on the sector you work in?

It is important to us that our projects generates a lot of attention. Both the media and the public see our holistic concept as a flagship project and have shown a great deal of interest in it. It has created a sensation and that is a good thing – for us and for the issue of quality and dignified housing for elderly people that we want to promote.

We have already become a model for other facilities and that is exactly the point – to change something. By combining functionality and design, for example, we are charting a course that’s genuinely unique for a residential care facility.

What impact has your business had on the community?

Our project is helping to change the view of residential care homes at the renovation, remodelling and construction stage. In other words, deliberately creating environments to make sure that residents can live on their own terms, making their own decisions, for as long as possible. Unfortunately, the reality is often quite different. Facilities are modernised and renovated without anyone thinking about how the individual components interact and how these ‘improvements’ can actually help people.

We also want to provide momentum in the social sector. We see great development potential in the next few years and decades because of the growing demand in the sector. Health care will create new interdisciplinary approaches – to architecture, technology and new media. Hopefully this will result in greater recognition of a deserving social sector.

How does Triodos Bank share your vision?

Triodos Bank wants to see positive change in society. This positive change is exactly what we want too. It is like two interlocking cogwheels. We live our vision of a better world by helping to provide a better quality of life and self-determination for people, and preserve their dignity in the process. We are building for a positive future just as Triodos Bank is.

We can achieve our objective of sustainability together with Triodos Bank. A sustainability that enables us, as much as we can, to address the social needs of the future.

Ferme Nos Pilifs

Health and social care – Case study (photo)

Benoît Ceysens, Director La Ferme Nos Pilifs

What challenge was the inspiration for your project?

Sheltered workshops, providing employment for people with disabilities, must learn to work with both the traditional and fast-changing economy if they want to survive and flourish.

At Ferme Nos Pilifs, we aim to develop a more inclusive economic model, one that reorganizes energy, jobs and products so that everyone can find a job. To achieve that, we must build bridges between the social and the traditional economy. We need to reinvent the way we work.

It is also important for Ferme Nos Pilifs that our farm and social enterprise are not merely regarded as a sheltered workshop; people shouldn’t come to us out of compassion. Ferme Nos Pilifs is a valuable company that provides useful, high-quality work.

What was your innovation that addresses this problem?

Ferme Nos Pilifs makes openness and diversification its trademark. It chooses to develop small-scale, local and craft activities close to the needs of the people who work at the farm. It focuses on strong, local relationships.

Visitors will find a small café, a children’s farm, a tree nursery, an ecological garden company, a grocery-come-bakery, including homemade organic bread and pastries and a handling and mailing service for the printing and distribution of mail.

Currently, the farm employs 170 people, including 140 with minor disabilities. Each activity is adjusted to the capacities of the employee and each job must have a social dimension, be financially viable and fit within the project’s environmental-friendly framework.

What impact has Triodos Bank had on your business?

Just like any company, Ferme Nos Pilifs needs reliable financial partners. Our collaboration with Triodos Bank goes beyond the traditional client-supplier relationship. Triodos Bank has become a true partner.

For projects that require a substantial investment, the approach to the financing makes all the difference.. Triodos Bank’s answers always are recommendations more than commercial proposals. For a businessman it is great added value to be able to trust your bank in this way.

What impact has your business had on the sector you work in?

The inclusive business model that Ferme Nos Pilifs has developed is unique in its sector, such as the far-reaching diversification and connection with the district and the town.

As well as a local focus we are active in our federation (FEBRAP, the Brussels federation of sheltered workplaces) and continue to work to preserve employment positions for the most vulnerable workers.

What impact has your business had on the community?

The establishment of the Ferme Nos Pilifs in Belgium’s Neder-Over-Heembeek has had a positive effect on the district. By involving the local community in its activities, Ferme Nos Pilifs has helped to provide the district with a positive image.

How does Triodos Bank share your vision?

Providing meaningful, dignified employment for people with disabilities at Ferme Nos Pilifs aligns with the core principles of the social economy in which Triodos Bank has already acted as a financier for 20 years in Belgium.


We measure the number of elderly care homes financed and the number of individuals that live in those care homes, across Triodos Bank’s branch network. In our calculations we only measure the projects with a direct relationship to our finance or investment and we exclude care homes that are (fully) under construction or offer only day care facilities.

We include 100% of the impact when we co-finance a project. If it is not possible to record 100% of the data required, we use conservative estimates.

The ‘Impact per customer’ calculations used throughout the annual report are based on a total of 652,000 customers at the end of 2016.

Our impact on film

De Ringoven

Create your own report

Our impact on film

Centrum Ganspoel