• Sustainability

Community Impact

Community Involvement
Our passion is to improve the quality of life; this also applies to the communities in which we operate. Sustainable urbanization is our main area on which we focus in our company-wide community involvement strategy, since we are well positioned to address this challenge with our expertise on the fields of infrastructure, water, environment, buildings and urban planning. 

As our towns and cities grow at unprecedented rates, urbanization is one of the most pressing challenges facing the global community in the 21st century. Making sustainable improvements to the urban environment is critical to delivering lasting results for all our communities. For this reason Arcadis has a global partnership with UN-Habitat, the United Nations agency for human settlements. Arcadis also dedicates time, expertise and money to many local community involvement initiatives. 

UN-Habitat Partnership Program
The partnership with UN-Habitat, known as the Shelter Program, was signed in March 2010 and is aimed at our common goal: to improve the quality of life in rapidly growing cities around the world. Through the Shelter Program we provide pro bono expertise for UN-Habitat projects, mostly by visiting projects and providing consultancy on location, in close cooperation with UN-Habitat and the local government. In addition to the consultancy work in some locations the Shelter program participates in training courses and workshops.

In 2015, 30 missions, training courses, workshops, and other Shelter activities were organized all over the world, in which almost 400 Arcadis experts have shared their expertise and skills to help bring our joint mission forward.

Program activities in 2015 included:

  • Eight Shelter missions, including drainage in Indonesia and urban planning and city profiling as support for social economic development in Myanmar;
  • Follow-up support on infrastructure for Tacloban in The Philippines, where, with the support of Shelter, UN-Habitat prepared the masterplan for recovery shortly after the typhoon in November 2013;
  • Fifth Annual Shelter Academy in October in the Netherlands, where ten officials from developing countries, recommended by UN-Habitat, made an implementation and action plan looking at case studies on climate adaptation and mitigation in their region during a week-long program;
  • Participation in the World Urban Campaign activities and steering committee.

In November 2014 our CEO Neil McArthur received a recognition plaque in Manilla, signed by UN-Habitat country program manager Chris Rollo and Undersecretary Cecilia Alba, secretary general of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council of Philippines government.

Community involvement activities
We encourage our people to get involved in local community programs with expertise, time and donations.  A few examples follow:

Water for People
Arcadis North America is a global sponsor of Water For People, committing to a $100,000 annual donation. Water For People exists for one purpose, and it is as simple as the name: for all people to have safe, continuous water.

Arcadis Netherlands has a partnership with KNHM in which Arcadis invests €300,000 annually. With this program we support people who want to improve the quality of life of their neighbourhood and assists people who want to realise their idea aiming at the improvement of the physical living environment. We support people with our knowledge.

Tondo School
Arcadis has had a partnership with the Philippine Community Fund (PFC) since 2007 and designed the Tondo School for the children of the Smokey Mountain rubbish dump in Manila. This school was built using recycled shipping containers and has become a true example of sustainability by providing the children and their families with food and health care, as well as offering employment for their parents.

United Way Fall Giving Campaign
For almost 30 years, CallisonRTKL has given back to the community through United Way. By bringing together a variety of community leaders - from business, government and local citizens - United Way identifies major issues in our communities and then works together to find solutions. 

A Place to Go
The “A Place to Go” project is a very successful local fundraising project of the CallisonRTKL office in Washington, DC which led to the building of a school in Kenya. CallisonRTKL team members travelled to Kenya for the grand opening celebration of the school.

Arcadis also supports several other initiatives around the world, including Habitat for Humanity, the Mother Theresa Foundation and the CRASH program in the UK. CRASH is a practical charity addressing the issues of homelessness by harnessing the skills, products and goodwill of the construction and property industry to improve hostels, day centres, night shelters, training centres and move-on accommodation, for frontline homelessness agencies who work directly with homeless people.