"Whether they live on the plains or in the valleys,
whether they live in slums or isolated villages, whether they speak Hindi, Swahili, or Uzbek,
people have one thing in common:
They do not want charity.
They want a chance.
They do not want solutions
imposed from without.
They want the opportunity to build from within.
They do not want my culture or yours.
They want their own.
They want a future enriched by
the inheritance of their past."
James D. Wolfensohn,
World Bank President
The Odebrecht Group's core commitment is taking part in projects in the economic and social arenas that bring about sustainable development. This is achieved through the production of wealth, generated by the continuous creation of decent job opportunities, a steady rate of production and distribution of goods and services, and the rational and scrupulous use of natural resources.
This commitment is the essence of the Group's corporate responsibility, which includes sponsoring social programs aimed at meeting local communities' needs in the areas of education, health, and the production of work opportunities and sources of income.
The main agent of our participation in social development programs and projects is the Odebrecht Foundation, which is now celebrating its 40th anniversary. A Brazilian pioneer in the field of social action, the Odebrecht Foundation is now concentrating on the eleven municipalities that make up the Southern Bahia Lowlands, an impoverished micro-region of the northeastern Brazilian state of Bahia. This is where the Foundation is carrying out the Program for the Integrated and Sustainable Regional Development of the Southern Bahia Lowlands in partnership with the public sector and organized civil society.
This special commemorative issue of Odebrecht Informa magazine is contributing to the Odebrecht Foundation's 40th birthday celebrations with a detailed report on the opportunities for quality schooling, work and income that are being created in the Southern Bahia Lowlands, and the resulting improvements in local families' quality of life. This issue also shows how, by taking part in the transformation of these communities through the Odebrecht Foundation, the Odebrecht Group is helping reduce social inequalities, thereby driving Brazil's sustainable development at the local, regional and national levels.
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