In a broad-based project in DR Congo,a 10-year, public private partnership (PPP) hasbeen set up with the local dredging company“La Congolaise des Voies Maritimes” (CVM) to dredge the Congo River. An important part of the PPP is that CVM will eventually have its own vessel and three crews so it can be self-reliant in the future.
DEME is supporting a fascinating project, which involves unemployed youngsters building a replica of the famous three masted ship used by the polar explorer Adrien de Gerlache - the ‘Belgica’.
Young people who are unable to find work are helped by the non-profit organisation De Steenschuit, which provides training courses in shipbuilding. The organisation is hoping that the ‘New Belgica’ will be ready for the Tall Ships Race in 2020.
The Special Olympics uses sport to improve the lives of those with intellectual disabilities. In May 2016, the national games took place in La Louvière in Belgium, where 3,600 Belgian athletes participated.
DEME has been assisting the athletes taking part for the last four years by mobilising volunteers to help with the Special Olympics Health Athletes Programme (HAP), together with the Lions Club of Belgium. DEME also provides financial assistance to cater for the necessary equipment and logistics.
Namma Beach-Namma Chennai project
DEME supports the Namma Beach-Namma Chennai project, which aims to clean the beach at Injambakkam-Akkarai and the surrounding streets. The project has provided the local Injambakkam School with water taps, blackboards, sitting mats for the youngest pupils and tables with benches for the senior students.
SPEED Trust is another organisation that has been supported by DEME in recent years. SPEED Trust concentrates its efforts on one of the largest slums in Chennai where 2,600 families live. DEME is supporting various health and medical projects such as the SPEED Trust Dispensary, Hygiene & Health Education camps for children and it provides assistance for disabled people and widows by helping them find employment.
Sister Jeanne Devos
The DEME4Life Foundation supports the Indian fund of the Belgian missionary sister Jeanne Devos in recognition of her efforts to help children and women in India, such as the initiative for daughters of exploited domestic workers. DEME is providing a classroom and a teacher to help the girls with their homework so they can continue their education.
Since 2015, Dredging International Asia Pacific (DIAP) - the Singaporean subsidiary of DEME - has been working with The Red Pencil, an NGO headquartered in Singapore that offers both creative and clinical arts therapy services to various organisations including hospitals, family centres, shelters and schools, as well as to humanitarian missions outside of the city-state.
In 2016, DIAP participated in The Red Pencil Ride for Hope to raise money for the NGO. Additionally, DIAP supported two charity fundraising concerts by bringing two of the best contemporary Belgian ensembles to Singapore, the Belgian Saxophone Ensemble and Incantevole.
In Belgium, DEME is supporting the Brazilian community through involvement in “Raiz Mirim”.
“Raiz Mirim” is an educational and sociocultural organisation which provides support to families who have emigrated from Brazil to Belgium. Originally, this project focused on Brazilian children living in Belgium and provided a vital link to their homeland. Every week the children take part in creative and cultural workshops. Then the project further developed because it became clear that some of the families needed more support, so the Foundation also provides assistance for help with any psychological issues that children may be experiencing.
As well as offering funding, DEME4Life organises special outings for the families. “Raiz Mirim” was, for example, invited to take part in the launching ceremonies of the TSHDs ‘Minerva’ and ‘Scheldt River’.