We realized the value of water in 1984

Everything dates back to a 30-minute documentary about the then ongoing drought in Peru that aired on Swedish television in March 1984. Two Atlas Copco employees saw the program and got a very strong notion that they wanted and could help the affected areas get access to water. Today, some 30+ years later, we have employees in more than 50 countries carrying on the legacy of our founders Torgny Rogert and Peter Håkansson.

The two founders of Water for All, Torgny Rogert and Peter Håkansson, take us back to 1984 and describe how and why Water for All was founded and their experiences from the first project in Peru.


How a drive to help became a global movement

Water for All was founded in Sweden in 1984 by two Atlas Copco employees, Torgny Rogert and Peter Håkansson. They independently saw a documentary on Swedish television about the then ongoing drought in Peru and the harsh living conditions that followed. Affected by what they had seen, they decided to find a way to help. They successfully engaged their fellow employees to contribute with voluntary donations to support a project, giving the drought-stricken areas in Peru access to clean drinking water. They were so successful in this endeavor that Atlas Copco joined the cause and promised to donate the same amount of money as was raised by the employees.

The first Water for All project was not only a success for Peruvian people, it also meant Atlas Copco had a large group of engaged employees who wanted to continue doing good in other countries as well. Now, more than 30 years later, what once was a one-time project has grown into a global initiative with projects implemented all over the world. The common denominator is that they are all funded by voluntary employee donations and still driven on the local level by Atlas Copco employees. As of 2011, Atlas Copco doubles the employee donations.

  • Water for All on Atlas Copco Radio (podcast) 29.5 MB, AUDIO
How it started - Peru