DES MOINES, Iowa (May 21, 2018) – More than 20 Kemin Industries employees and Nelson Foundation board members are in Brazil this week to build cisterns for families in need of clean water as part of Habitat for Humanity’s Water for Lives program.
Kemin employees from five continents traveled to the state of Pernambuco in Brazil’s northeastern region. The families in this area live in extreme poverty and often walk long distances to get water for their homes. Kemin volunteers are building 16,000-liter cisterns, which are water tanks with mechanisms to collect rain water, at families’ homes to make safe, usable water available and improve their quality of life.
"Millions of people still lack access to the most basic human right – water. The families Habitat for Humanity Brazil serves through this project earn less than $200 per month and are unable to pay for cisterns out of their own pocket,” said Socorro Leite, National Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity Brazil. “They have been waiting years for government projects, suffering as they faced the worst drought in the past 50 years. Now that it has started to rain again, it's extremely important we get these cisterns built quickly so families may begin to harvest rain water as soon as possible. The cisterns built by Kemin volunteers will have an immediate impact on these families' quality of life."
The volunteer trip is part of Habitat for Humanity Brazil’s Water for Lives project, which pairs together masons, neighbors and volunteers to provide accessible, clean water to those living in the rural, semiarid region.
“The Brazilian population located far from large urban centers suffers from several problems. In these areas, residents do not have access to clean drinking water; 83 million of them are not connected to sewage systems; and 14 million citizens do not have garbage treatment,” said Jose Piccolotto, President of Kemin Animal Health and Nutrition, South America, and one of this year’s volunteers. “Those in the rural areas of northeast Brazil are currently living in some of the worst scenarios in the country. It means a great deal to me and the Kemin team to be able to help a community here in Brazil with such an important cause.”
Kemin employees are volunteering through Habitat for Humanity’s Global Village program, which gives people the opportunity to volunteer abroad in more than 40 nations. This is the second Global Village expedition for Kemin Industries. This year the Nelson Foundation, the philanthropic endeavor of the Nelson family who founded Kemin, is assisting Kemin employees, who have also raised funds for the Water for Lives project, with sponsorships for the volunteer trip.
“Kemin has been a corporate partner with Habitat for Humanity for almost 20 years, and we’re thrilled to be sending employees on another Global Village trip,” said Dr. Chris Nelson, President and CEO of Kemin Industries. “As a global company, Kemin recognizes that helping your neighbor goes beyond who’s next door. It’s about improving the quality of life for those around the world, which is our global vision,” said Dr. Nelson. “With employees around the world—including Brazil—Kemin understands that we all benefit from a safer and healthier future, and the Water for Lives project in Brazil can positively impact the health and well-being of those in serious need.”
To learn more about Kemin’s other charitable projects and community volunteer work, visit the social responsibility page on kemin.com.
About Kemin Industries
Kemin Industries (www.kemin.com) is a global ingredient manufacturer with a focus on improving the quality of life for over 3.8 billion people each day with more than 500 specialty ingredients made for the human and animal health, pet food, nutraceutical, food technology, crop technologies and textile industries.
For over half a century, Kemin has been dedicated to using applied science to address industry challenges and offers product solutions to customers in more than 120 countries. Kemin provides ingredients to feed a growing population with its commitment to the quality, safety and efficacy of food, feed and health-related products.
Established in 1961, Kemin is a privately-held, family-owned and operated company with more than 2,500 employees globally and operations in 90 countries, including manufacturing facilities in Belgium, Brazil, China, India, Italy, Russia, Singapore, South Africa and the United States.
About Habitat for Humanity
Driven by the vision that everyone needs a decent place to live, Habitat for Humanity began in 1976 as a grassroots effort on a community farm in southern Georgia. The Christian housing organization has since grown to become a leading global nonprofit working in local communities across all 50 states in the U.S. and in more than 70 countries. Families and individuals in need of a hand up partner with Habitat for Humanity to build or improve a place they can call home. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage. Through financial support, volunteering or adding a voice to support affordable housing, everyone can help families achieve the strength, stability and self-reliance they need to build better lives for themselves. Through shelter, we empower. To learn more, visit habitat.org.