75 projects spread across 30 countries, supporting and helping 37 local drinking water companies to perform better. Thousands of deployments of Dutch water experts, who contribute their labour and expertise for brief or extensive periods. These results reflect 10 years of Vitens Evides International. VEI celebrates its anniversary this year.
Vitens Evides International was founded in 2006 by Vitens and Evides Waterbedrijf, which decided to no longer idly stand by and do nothing to help the billions of people in the world who are deprived of access to clean drinking water and good sanitation. The two largest drinking water companies in the Netherlands joined forces to create VEI and started to set up projects in various African and Asian countries. Dutch employees from the two companies travelled to these countries to help their foreign colleagues raise the performance of the local drinking water companies to a higher level.
Water and good sanitation for everybody
Their efforts focus on creating a better infrastructure, for example, or setting up more robust financial processes. VEI’s director, Marco Schouten: “A firm belief in access to drinking water and good sanitation for everybody is at the heart of VEI’s vision. We have organised these needs effectively in the Netherlands, and our dream is to let everybody benefit from the same amenities. That is what we want to achieve.”
Sustainable Development Goals
Safe tap water positively boosts the economic and social development of a region, thereby permanently creating new opportunities for the local population. Furthermore, through its work, VEI contributes to the (former) Millennium Development Goals and the (current) Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. At present, VEI is active in Bangladesh, Kenya, Vietnam, Uganda, Mozambique and other countries.
During the past decade, various other Dutch water companies have also joined VEI: WML, Watercompany Groningen and, as of 2015, PWN.