ARCADIS and UN-Habitat Celebrate Five Years of the Shelter Programme

Global consultancy ARCADIS marks five years of partnering with UN-Habitat in the Shelter programme, which has sent more than 500 experts on 50+ humanitarian missions to Asia, Africa and Central America

ARCADIS, the leading global natural and built asset design and consultancy firm, and UN-Habitat, the United Nations Agency for Human Settlements, have celebrated the fifth anniversary of Shelter, their partnership aimed at improving the quality of life in rapidly growing cities around the world. 

Through the programme, which was first established in March 2010, ARCADIS provides pro-bono expertise for UN-Habitat’s humanitarian projects, contributing to key activities of UN-Habitat. 

During these first five years, more than 50 missions, training events and other Shelter activities have been organized in Asia, Africa and Central America. These events have seen more than 500 ARCADIS experts share their expertise and skills to help move forward the UN-Habitat mission. Shelter missions have included support after the earthquake in Haiti, master planning for secondary cities in Rwanda, a master plan for the redevelopment of Tacloban in the Philippines after the devastating typhoon, coastal management in Sri Lanka, Senegal and Costa Rica and climate change adaption in Mongolia and Mozambique. 

Neil McArthur, Chief Executive, ARCADIS said: “We are very pleased to celebrate five years of the Shelter programme.  Many communities around the globe have benefited from the expertise that the programme has given them access to.  Moreover, it is very popular with our people who enjoy the opportunity to use their skills to make a difference in developing countries facing real, tangible problems.” 

UN Under-Secretary-General and UN-Habitat Executive Director, Dr Joan Clos, said: “The private sector can play a key role in meeting urban challenges. Staff at ARCADIS have shown commitment and dedication to the Shelter programme which contributes to UN-Habitat's mandate of promoting sustainable urban development and adequate housing for all. We thank all of them for their contribution and look forward to new projects to continue our joint efforts on improving the quality of life of citizens.” 

ARCADIS is also a main sponsor of the World Urban Campaign, an initiative of UN-Habitat acknowledged by the United Nations as a lead advocacy platform on urban issues to increase awareness and knowledge to achieve better cities and better life through successful urban solutions.

The most recent Shelter mission was organized to The Philippines in March 2015 to support UN-Habitat in the development of a more sustainable city.  The ARCADIS team was made up of experts from The Philippines, Chile, Netherlands, US and Australia. The next Shelter mission is planned to Myanmar in May to support UN-Habitat in demographic survey and urban planning. In total ten missions are planned in 2015.