Ubuntu – I Am Because We Are

Having grown up in South Africa, and then spending more than 20 years in different countries in Europe, NetNomads Community Founders, Marcel and Victoria Koning, appreciate the cultural differences between people who choose to work-to-live and those who live-to-work.

A generalisation, but it seems that those “living-to-work” focus more on competing with an “elbows-out, me-first” approach. Unsurprising from a Western perspective, as from a very early age, we’re encouraged to compete, to always be number 1, and to tower above the rest. Even if it means trampling people on the way up with the adage, ‘It’s business, not personal.’

Freelancers and entrepreneurs who work-to-live appreciate the value of community, and understand that collaboration is more sustainable. This community spirit is beautifully captured in the African expression, “If you want to travel fast, go alone. If you want to travel far, go together.

What is Ubuntu?

The African word roughly translates to “I am because we are”.

A fun tale explaining the philosophy of Ubuntu
The late Archbishop Desmond Tutu talks about the essence of being human

Inspiration for NetNomads Community

As Self-Employed Entrepreneurs, we built our flooring business in the Netherlands, as most people do – by ourselves. Learning non-core skills that seemed to take forever, becoming a “jack-of-all-trades”. Although excellent all-round knowledge, it’s not necessarily the best use of our time.

Over the years, we’ve worked with various small businesses who also struggle with trying to do it all.

Then a vision came to us to create a platform for people to be able to support each other in a fair and fun way. Where we can help each other grow in all aspects of life. Together. As a community.