Avalon is an international foundation, based in the Netherlands. The executive director and staff work from the Avalon office in Wommels.
I work at the Avalon Foundation since September 2001. As a financial assistant I am responsible for the daily financial activities. My education background is the Higher Economic School. Before I joined Avalon, I worked as an assistant-accountant in the agricultural sector for several years. In my free time I like walking, active holidays and working as a volunteer for the Oxfam shop.
At the end of the nineties me and my partner moved from crowded The Hague to a small village in Fryslân and I decided that, after a long period of working as a teacher, it was time for something completely different. After some wanderings in the commercial sector and journalism, I finally joined Avalon at the beginning of 2007, where I started as the Personal Assistant of Martien Lankester, founder of Avalon and a very busy person. At the end of 2010 I got the chance to focus on the internal organisation, an opportunity I grasped with both hands. For me it is a huge challenge to work on the optimisation of the organisation so we can spend our energy on Avalon’s mission. In my free time I love reading, long distance walking, calligraphy, non-traditional bookbinding and listening to Latin American music.
As a medical student in Amsterdam, I became convinced of the need to stimulate organic food and farming for the benefit of nature, the environment and health. This led me to establish an organic restaurant. In 1977 I set up an organic farm and an organic food shop next to my medical practice, and I also started promoting the conversion of farmers in the Dutch province of Fryslân. With a nature conservation organisation (one of) the first agri-environmental programme(s) in the Netherlands was developed. In 1991 I founded the Avalon Foundation in order to promote similar activities in Central and Eastern Europe and beyond. Networking is in my blood, and my experience in the field of institutional development, (co-)organising international conferences and project financing comes in handy. Current issues to be further developed are the relation of organic farming and food with nature conservation, climate change and energy use.
I've been working at the Avalon Foundation since July 2012. As a financial manager I am responsible for the management reports and daily financial activities. I studied at the University of Groningen where I graduated as a Certified Public Accountant. Being self-employed, I mainly work for government and non profit organizations. In my free time I like sports, travelling and reading.
Jolanda de Vries
After finishing my communications studies at the university for professional education in Leeuwarden, the Netherlands, I have been working as a communications assistant for several companies. Over the years I’ve focused on both communication policy and on the practical execution of communication activities, like copywriting, web content management and the organization of events. I've worked on and off for Avalon from 2007 onwards.
In my free time I love reading, competing in dog agility and mountainbiking.