Engineers without borders –
creating new horizons together
“Contributing to improving the quality of life” is a motto that not only fits with ILF’s vision, but certainly also applies to the association Engineers without Borders (IOG). In Austria the association was established in 2013 and focuses on technical development cooperation. Since then some 210 university students and engineers throughout Austria have come forward as volunteers for different projects around the world. As part of five regional groups they give up their free time to create long-term social added value for disadvantaged local communities.
With its “EduZapa” project, the Tyrolean regional group has been improving educational opportunities for school pupils in rural Mexico since 2016. Construction measures serve to create the basic conditions for a stimulating learning environment to motivate learners, and the measures furthermore offer incentives for improved educational offerings. This is meant to improve the pupils’ job prospects. The project was jointly developed by villagers, teachers and the interdisciplinary IOG team to bring about sustainable change. The construction works are underway and are progressing well thanks to the helping hands of the local population.
In 2017 the project received the Social Impact Award Austria. ILF Consulting Engineers supports the association through the provision of technical assistance.
“In the free economy, we as engineers just like our employer, are operating in a competitive environment and are therefore prompted to primarily pursue economically interesting projects. The work of Engineers Without Borders (EWB) combines engineering activity with social commitment, and enables me to be part of a motivated interdisciplinary team and to also dedicate my time to working on projects, which are often of vital importance yet have limited financial resources.”
“Having completed various professional assignments in developing countries on behalf of ILF, I also wanted to make a personal contribution, which is how I came across the organization Engineers Without Borders. For me, being able to use technical means to get to the roots of problems is a meaningful way to provide long-term development aid.”
“I would like to grow professionally and personally, and contribute to a better world. Engineers Without Borders is a good platform for this and allows me to meet many like-minded people.”
“I find it highly motivating to contribute my know-how and experience, in order to directly influence the living conditions of other people in a positive way. This is exactly what the organization, EWB, does across geographic and social boundaries. I perceive working in our motivated team to be very enriching, both professionally as well as personally.”
“I am very interested in international projects. The mix of students from different disciplines and experienced engineers creates space for innovative ideas and for deliberate changes of perspective. Everybody is extremely motivated and keen to help each other.”
“Working with EWB is a small personal contribution to supporting children and young people in other parts of the world to start a self-determined life. We do this by helping with the little things that are taken for granted in our country, such as having access to clean water, attending a school and as a result being able to learn to read and write.”
“I like the “Engineers Without Borders” concept: volunteers with technical know-how, personal commitment and corresponding motivation, who are the key to making a difference, together. Whilst pursuing this goal, we get to know other cultures and new people and are offered opportunities to expand our horizons.”