ICCO Cooperation is a global, non-governmental organization. We work towards a world in which people can live in dignity and well-being, a world without poverty and injustice.
The number of people living under the absolute poverty line of 1, 25 dollar per day is decreasing. That is the good news. But almost 1 billion people live still in extreme poverty and hunger. 2 billion people experience malnutrition. Moreover the gap between rich and poor is growing. Many people, and young people not in the least, are excluded from economic and social opportunities. Their basic human rights are denied.
We believe a world with less poverty is possible. To achieve this we embrace two core principles:
These principles are interrelated and explained in our strategy paper 'Towards a Just and Dignified World'. A livelihood without rights is not sustainable and dignity comes with a livelihood in which rights are respected. The core values of ICCO are compassion, justice and stewardship, expressions of our Christian roots.
Strategy 2018-2022: Towards a Just and Dignified World
We keep our eyes and ears close to the ground as a partner to enterprising people with a worldwide local network and a strong belief in the power of people to improve their livelihoods.
ICCO gives people the opportunity to link up to viable and sustainable agribusiness value chains, acquire income and produce sufficient and quality food for a balanced diet. We connect organizations and investors, and develop skills to enhance farmers’ livelihoods. We also support organizations that help farmers obtain land titles, and we work with private sector businesses that purchase produce, set quality standards and strengthen producer organizations.
There is not a one-off solution to end poverty and injustice. Also there are no quick fixes either. From more than 50 years of experience we know that multistakeholder and public private partnerships help a lot to achieve success. Therefore we facilitate, implement and invest in development programs in collaborations between civil society organizations, (social) enterprises and governments. We believe strong in deploying joint innovative capacities.
Many of our programs are characterized by a blended approach. We apply and combine funding sources, different financing instruments and business entities from the ICCO Group. In this we accept a certain measure of risk-taking by combining grant based co-financing with non-grant based funding mechanisms like loans, equity and impact investments. The graphic below shows the use of our technical and market services and products in the context of smallholders farmers and businesses.
We endeavor to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs are seen as the most important global agreements to improve people's lives which require full commitment of governments, the private sector and non-governmental organizations. There are 17 SDGs that relate to people, planet, and profit. The ICCO themes cover several SDGs. To measure our impact we have established programs indicators that correspond to the SDGs indicators 1, 2, 8 and 16.
The foundation ICCO was established on December 30th 1964. Besides from 14 November 2012 Coöperatie ICCO U.A. (brand name: ICCO Cooperation) was started. Present members of the cooperative is ICCO Foundation. The cooperative is owner of the holding ICCO Group B.V. To this group belong three for-profit subsidiaries: FairClimateFund, Fair & Sustainable Consulting and Truvalu.
ICCO is a member of the ACT Alliance, a global alliance of 150 churches and related organizations focusing on long-term development, humanitarian assistance and advocacy.
ICCO Cooperation is a Dutch cooperative with an international organizational structure. The control over strategy, policy and funds of the organization is shared by the Supervisory Board and the Executive Board. The principal activities are carried out from ICCO’s regional and country offices.
The Executive Board is responsible for the overall organization and consists of:
Sybren Attema became CEO of ICCO on 1st July 2019. Before ICCO he was Global Manager of FrieslandCampina’s Dairy Development Program, based in Vietnam and later in the Netherlands. Sybren was responsible for the management of large public-private partnerships. Previously he was also chairman of the Supervisory Board of Royal Friesland Foods N.V. and played a key role in the successful merger between Friesland Foods and Campina in 2008.
J. (Jolanda) Wakkerman; CFO and member. Wakkerman joined ICCO in Spring 2018. Since December 1st she is the CFO and responsible for all internal affairs. Before ICCO she worked in several companies, both in finance roles and in management and board positions. In the last 14 years, she was employed in the healtcare industry. Before that she was a chartered accountant and worked for Arthur Andersen & Co.
Verweij and Wakkerman are joint director of the ICCO Group B.V., of which the Coöperatie ICCO U.A. is the only shareholder.
The Supervisory Board oversees the functioning of the Executive Board. Members are:
Ir. J. (Johan) F. de Leeuw. Chairman of the Supervisory Board and member of the Remuneration Committee. Senior consultant in the Public Service, Chairman CTGB (College Admissions Pesticides and Biocides). Former Secretary-General of the Ministry of Agriculture and former Director-General of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment.
Prof. Dr. Ir. G. (Gert) van Dijk. Member of the Audit Committee. Professor at Wageningen University, Nyenrode University and TiasNimbas, Tilburg University.
Drs. W. (Wim) Oosterom. Member of the de Audit Committee. Business economist and chartered accountant. He was Global Sector Manager at Price Waterhouse Coopers.
Mr. A. (Albert) Knigge. Partner Corporate Litigation, Houthoff Buruma. Knigge represents companies, financial institutions and professional service firms in complex multi-party often cross border litigation. Board member of the Netherlands Association for Civil Procedure.
Regional ambassadors are the independent ears and eyes of a region. They proactively advise regional managers and connect ICCO to networks. Each region has maximum five ambassadors whose expertise aligns with the thematic focus of that region.
The founder of ICCO was Jo Verkuyl. He worked as a missionary preacher in Indonesia, a man with an unconventional approach to aid in developing countries. As one of the very few in his time, Verkuyl believed that development work should be focused on the needs of the poor. He was convinced that all changes start at community level. Compassion, justice and stewardship: these were the three values on which founding Verkuyl, protestant churches and Dutch civil society organizations established ICCO in 1964 on December 30th. These values guide us to this day. Originally, the meaning of the acronym ICCO is Interkerkelijk Coördinatie Commissie Ontwikkelingshulp (= Interchurch Coordination Comimttee Development Aid). Nowadays ICCO is a name in itself.
On the occasion of ICCO's 50th jubilee in 2015 the book 'Journey to Justice'was writte. It contains 11 stories and interviews with partners about our rich history.
Our long track record and expertise have created a vast international network of civil society organizations, private companies, governments, knowledge centers and institutional donors. These relationships allow us to work together with the best parties in multistakeholder programs.
Strategic partners of ICCO Cooperation