ENGAGE Festival was first held in 2017, with the idea created by Veteran Jeppe Michael Jensen. On the 20th anniversary of his deportation to Bosnia, where he was injured, Jeppe found that several of his comrades also lacked understanding of the community they had been apart of and what they had been through. In the interest of solving this issue, Jeppe came up with the idea for a foundation and a festival.
In 2016, the Veteran Foundation was established, with the aim of supporting Danish veterans and their relatives. The foundation is run by those who are passionate on the subject and work professionally with 4 purposes: Recognition, Community, Information and Fundraising.
At the same time, the foundation wants to make it easier for companies to support the veteran cause, by acting as a professional and inclusive initiative for everyone.
Over the last three years, we have seen a positive development, with faithful support from several strong allies: the veteran community, relatives, politicians from all parties, and private companies.
- We’ve had over 15,000 visitors!
- At all three festivals, 98% answered ‘Satisfied’ or ‘Very Satisfied’ with ENGAGE
- 1/3 of attendees have become more knowledgeable about veterans
- Around 50% of guests are veterans or relatives of veterans
- Some veterans use ENGAGE as a way to hold reunions. By 2020, we expect to have over 600 Afghanistan veterans here for a reunion
Our finances have improved and we are experiencing positive growth that aims to make us a self-sustaining organization. This would not be possible without our sponsors and partners who have become part of our association that works towards a better veteran culture in Denmark. We want to build a strong relationship with our allies and allow them to be apart of the community through ENGAGE.
After three years of hard work, we have expanded the festival! We are so proud of this, but also very grateful for the support we have received so far from our faithful supporters. In Copenhagen, Refshaleøens Ejendomsselskab is a fantastic festival venue, and in Skive, we have the honor of borrowing the base’s barracks!