From left: Municipality of Raalte Mayor Martijn Dadema, Henri Brookson and the maker of the artwork Kees van der Ven. Photo courtesy Mary Simmons.

 LUTTENBERG--He has not lived there anymore for thirty years, but Henri Brookson still feels the warmth of the village of Luttenberg. In gratitude he commissioned a work of art as a gift to the small community in the East of the Netherlands, not far from the border with Germany.

  Together with 14 children from primary school Esmoreit he unveiled the artwork, made by Frans van der Ven from Almere.

  Brookson chose a tree to represent the power of the village, with a trunk made out of hands representing the solidarity and helpfulness in the village, which counts many volunteers. Not for nothing, the work of art was unveiled on Volunteer Day, Friday, December 7.

  Fourteen children each made a drawing about the solid bond they have with others. The drawings hang like leaves on the branches of the tree, as well as the emblem of the 700th anniversary of the village of Luttenberg, which was celebrated last year.

  Many Luttenbergers and former villagers, including Brookson, attended the celebrations. Brookson told those gathered at the unveiling that he wanted to thank the village for the warm welcome he had received there when he started working at the primary school there. He married his wife Agnes in Luttenberg and together they bought their first house there. As such, Luttenberg has been locked in their hearts forever.