Meet Our Founders
When Tessa and Paul Van Arkel relocated to Poland in 2017 they were struck by the difficult living situation of many Polish seniors who could not afford basic medications. There are as many as 1.3 million Poles aged 65 and older who have to survive on an income of less than 1000 zlotych. Due to poverty and inadequate health services, Polish seniors live on average 4 years shorter than seniors from other EU countries. Confronted with these data, Tessa and Paul decided to launch a charity that provides free medications to Polish senior citizens with low-income.
Even though Tessa and Paul have no Polish ancestry, they feel connected to Poland through history. They are from the region in Holland that was liberated by Polish troops during WW2. Thanks to the bravery of the Poles, Tessa and Paul’s generation grew up in freedom. This Foundation is their way of giving back to the people who fought hard their entire lives for the better world, yet are too often forgotten and marginalized in today’s Poland.
Tessa and Paul cover all the running costs of the Foundation themselves, ensuring that 100% of the donations go to seniors in need. Founded in May 2018, the Fundacja Zdrowie Seniora currently supports 78 seniors providing them with yearlong access to free medications.