Atlas Copco’s Water for All organization is celebrating 30 years.

The employee-run initiative has helped give more than 1.5 million people access to clean drinking water since its founding in 1984.

“What started as a one-time project to raise money to combat drought-stricken communities in Peru has grown into a worldwide initiative that allows our employees to act on their commitment to global sustainability,” says Jim Levitt, president of Atlas Copco North America.

To celebrate the anniversary, Atlas Copco USA held a membership drive. It ended up increasing employee participation by 10 percent. Participants also voted on Water for All’s next project. Employees will fund a $50,000 mission in the Tigray region of Ethiopia that will bring clean water to 2,500 people through five community-drilled wells.

The organization is Atlas Copco’s main community engagement project. In the past four years, the Water for All initiative has helped more than 10,000 people gain access to clean drinking water and sanitation. It has donated more than $500,000 to 15 projects around the world in that same time frame.

“We are proud to support organizations that raise awareness and take action around the issues of unsafe drinking water and global water scarcity,” Levitt says.

The program is supported by nearly 5,000 participating employees in 35 countries. The donations go directly to water projects and are double-matched by Atlas Copco.

The 30th anniversary was Aug. 22, 2014. As part of the celebration, Kurt Busch’s No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS featured the Water for All logo during his fifth place finish in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race Aug. 23 in Bristol.

Atlas Copco, based in Stockholm, Sweden, serves segments ranging from compressors and air treatment systems to construction, mining and drilling equipment. The company, founded in 1873, has more than 40,000 employees worldwide, and operates in more than 180 countries. Atlas Copco in North America operates in more than 109 locations and employs more than 4,500 people in the United States. For more information, visit