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Community development

Rooted in our company’s history, we believe in creating a more viable society. We seek to be a committed partner for the local communities where we operate.

young girls in yoga class

We believe in active engagement and participation in the communities we are part of. Through dialogue and collective action with our stakeholders, we develop social projects and initiatives aiming to make a positive difference.   

With operations in 40 countries, our approach to community development must fit local needs. In addition to stakeholder dialogue, socio-economic assessments help us identify our impact and local requirements.  

Our social projects and initiatives are connected to our three strategic areas: education, economic growth, and strengthened institutions. 

Education 

In communities and countries with strong educational institutions, we provide educational programs in sciences, technology, engineering and mathematics. We also support communities through apprenticeships where apprentices can develop hands-on vocational skills at our local plants. Through investments in research and development we contribute to local research institutions and universities in the communities. 

Where educational institutions are more fragile, we also contribute to quality education in primary schools. This includes providing training for teachers as well as school programs targeted at increasing the quality of education provided.  

Decent work and economic growth       

We seek to increase income opportunities for people in communities where access to decent work is limited. We do this through social projects that emphasize entrepreneurship, income generation using available land and resources, strengthening of local job boards, employment networks and labor institutions, worker integration, supplier development, or similar.  

Some of our projects include the refugee integration program at our Grevenbroich plant in Germany, Embarca entrepreneurship program, Amesa agriculture development program, and Supplier development program in Brazil. 

Strengthening institutions 

We seek to be a good neighbor and committed partner for local institutions in all communities we are part of. We support the development and building of strong civil and community institutions where it is needed. To do this, we work to empower community members, institutions and organizations that operate in the community. In close collaboration with all relevant stakeholders we offer relevant capacity building and training.  

Currently, our largest initiative to strengthen and empower communities is the Sustainable Barcarena Initiative. The initiative is an independent platform for sustainable development in Barcarena in northern Brazil. Two of our largest plants in Brazil, Alunorte and Albras, are both located in Barcarena. The initiative will be set up as a separate legal entity, with its own organization, sponsored by but independent of Hydro. To drive implementation, Hydro has hired independent facilitators with broad experience in conflict resolution and in facilitating complex processes with many stakeholders.