BRUSSELS - One-third of the women in Belgium have a pension of less than 750 euros. That's little, but doesn't have to be a problem: if you are happily married, have a long career behind you and can put the money together as a couple. But for a whole group of women, this is not the case. The baby boomers are the first generation to divorce in such large numbers. Before that, couples used to stay together forever.

Now there is a whole generation of divorced women, who find themselves in financial difficulties: they didn't build up a pension because they stayed at home, have no social rights because of messy legislation and cannot count on their husband's pension either. Widows of self-employed workers or ex-wives of civil servants come to the conclusion that, after a life of 'caring for', they now have to be taken care of themselves. 

That is why Wederik De Backer and Justine Vergotte made three portraits of three women without a husband, who did not build up a full pension. 

Illustration: © Anne Manteleers

Team members

Wederik De Backer

Wederik De Backer creates radio documentaries and podcasts.

Justine Vergotte

Justine Vergotte is a freelance investigative journalist and designer. 

€ 3.575 allocated on 12/08/2019.


  • Zandman, Radio 1, op 30, 31/03 en 01/04/2020 om 22u.
  • Moeders ten laste, Radio1.be, starting 30/03/2019.
  • Different podcast platforms 

ONLINE (in Dutch)


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