Domů Zahraničí Mensa Foundation in the Netherlands

The Mensa Foundation (www.mensafonds.nl) was established in 2013 by Mensa Netherlands with the aim of making the significance of giftedness in the society more visible. This is done by disseminating knowledge about high general intelligence, by supporting projects and research and by encouraging special achievements, for example, via the Award program. All work is done by volunteers. Mensa Foundation is completely dependent on sponsors and donations.

A full professor

From day one we strived to install a full professor of the highly gifted. There are a number of factors that have to come together to install a full professor. To find a university that supports the concept and it should fit in the faculty program, a dean who supports it and is willing to present the case to the Board of the university, to develop a program and a research assignment, and then we have to agree on an appointment procedure. Currently we are in the position that we have green lights on all aspects and we hope to install the full professor in the course of 2022. The intention is to seek interfaculty cooperation and to seek cooperation in an international university network. In our long term vision there would be an international network of scientists originated from Mensa Foundations in every country.

Awards

Another spearhead is to put high giftedness on the agenda of the national “movers and shakers” and businesses, to get publicity for this topic. The most visible is our yearly award program.

Three elements are of great importance for the awarding of individual Awards: 1) making visible the significance of high general intelligence for society; 2) supporting best practices to make the most of very high intelligence, 3) contributing to a positive image of giftedness and social opportunities. In addition, the distinctive character of the contribution is taken into account for all candidates

The first award ceremony took place in 2013, just seven months after foundation. It has generated the necessary positive publicity for high intelligence in general and for the nominees and winners in particular. We can be satisfied but we want more; we are ambitious. More nominees and more attention for highly intelligent people. The proud winners and nominees of recent years have been ambassadors ever since and have given various presentations and lectures themselves. In this way too, more attention has been paid to the people for whom we make all these efforts, the multiplier effect.

Grey Gold: qualitative attention for gifted elderly people.

We do not have a definition, but those who would gain most are the highly gifted people in nursing homes, those who are less mobile, and those not having intellectual peers in their close social environment. The gifted older person has been a strategic topic of the Mensa Foundation since 2014 under the name Grey Gold. We focus our attention on:

– the gifted people who will work on their own future in which they can live a dignified and intellectually challenging life,
– initiatives in care where older people are encouraged and challenged to keep using their intelligence,
– stimulating scientific research of the elderly and the development of intelligence.

The role of the Mensa Foundation is to get this topic on the agenda of relevant organizations, by ourselves or in cooperation with other relevant (not-for-profit) organizations that advocate the interests of the (gifted) elderly.

Award ceremony live

The next award ceremony will be April 10 at 15:00 CET (UTC+1) and will be live-streamed from a professional studio. It will all be in Dutch and even if you do not understand Dutch you will sense the positive atmosphere; it is a party! The link to the on-line stream will be published on the Website of the Mensa Foundation on April 19. (The event will be recorded and will be made available on our website.) We are welcoming your support in ideas for cooperation, in feedback and in donations that enable us to do more and better. Newsletter: info@mensafonds.nl.

The aim for Mensa The Netherlands and the Mensa Foundation is to reinforce each other. Together we achieve what has been stated in the International Constitution since the beginning of Mensa’s existence as an ambition for high intelligence: ‘for the benefit of humanity’.

Reprinted from the Mensa World Journal, May, 2022, issue 112.

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