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Excellent Development Relaunch



By Christina Adamidou

Excellent Development, the award-winning charity has now rebranded as “Excellent, Pioneers of Sand Dams,” with a new strategy concentrating on opening up sand dams in drylands across the world.  This strategy was officially launched on the 8th February 2011, at an event sponsored and hosted by investment management firm, Thames River Capital, based in Berkeley Square in London.

The scheme hopes to improve and support communities in Kenya by building sand dams. Excellent Development will be partnering with other international organisations to support the application of sand dam technology in their countries. Ultimately, Excellent and their associates will create ‘Centres of Excellence’ in three continents to demonstrate their political, economic, social, technical, legal and environmental potentials.

Executive Director Simon Maddrell said, “This strategic change is about Excellent moving from being supporters of sand dams to pioneers of sand dams.  We believe that sand dams will transform millions of lives; they are the world’s lowest cost method of capturing rainwater in dry rural areas, home to 80% of the world’s poor.”

Since 2002, Excellent has helped to improve and sustain water supplies, food production, health and incomes in African communities. Their new vision that ‘sand dams will transform millions of lives,’ means that building sand dams has an enormous environmental impact enabling communities to gain access to clean water close to their home.  A concrete wall comprising of soil, silt and sand, sand dams are a cost-effective, innovative solution to water shortages in semi-arid areas. Compared to other water harvesting techniques, sand dams are environmentally friendly as they control erosion and manage silt deposition within river basins. Farmers save hours of time enabling them to focus on terracing their farms, planting trees and improving food production.  

Excellent needs support of governmental and international organisations for the successful implementation of this technology. To achieve this, research of the technology’s potential and benefits as well as clear scientific evidence of their efficacy need to be demonstrated.

Simon Maddrell, added, “Sand dams are a 2,000 year-old technology that has never taken off; there are currently less than 150 sand dams being built every year worldwide, mainly in Kenya.  It is our mission to change this – but not by creating an empire or doing it alone.  There are many fantastic organisations worldwide that could enhance their work by supporting communities to build sand dams.”

Excellent obtained pro bono support from the agency WPA Pinfold to renew its brand and communications strategy.  With a new name - Excellent, Pioneers of Sand Dams and ‘water drop and leaf’ logo this strengthens this identity, reflecting the holistic nature of Excellent’s work and how the water supplied from sand dams enables communities to plant trees and improve food production.  

The charity’s website is at www.excellent.org.uk

Excellent Development Limited is a Registered Charitable Company.  Registered in England and Wales No. 4432166.  Registered Charity No. 1094478.  Registered Office: 2 Water Court, Water Street, Birmingham, B3 1HP.


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