On 9 July it became rather crowded in our new office on Spui 1 in The Hague. This was due to seventy-something current and former CILC staff and directors, colleagues, partners and esteemed guests from the Netherlands and abroad coming together to raise a glass to 30 years of international legal cooperation of the Netherlands justice sector through CILC.
Over the years CILC has had its ups and downs, and it has endured. Today it shows the spirit and energy of a thirty year old global citizen at the beginning of a promising international career. Believing in a better world. Full of ideas and ambitions on how to contribute to such a better world. At times perhaps even a little impatient and pushy, as some donors and partners can confirm. This stems from a strong belief in the rightness of our approach, the importance of our work and the relevance of letting practitioners from different countries meet. “Persistence” is perhaps what current and past staff of CILC have always had in common.
We started in 1985 supporting the Netherlands-Indonesian legal cooperation, where “we” meant wonderful professionals like CILC founding fathers Jan van Olden and Jan Michiel Otto. Now in 2015 CILC still cooperates with Indonesia, but we work in many more countries these days, supporting the rule of law in different ways. The current CILC portfolio includes 30 projects spanning 27 different countries. We do this with eleven committed colleagues at our office in The Hague and we can rely on numerous fantastic partners and practitioners from the Netherlands and more and more also from abroad.
CILC continues to be an inspiring work environment, now in the very heart of Dutch politics and governance. But we will remain CILC – both feet on the ground and practitioners oriented. With professional and exceptionally dedicated staff and experts, a growing network of trusted and competent partners and project outcomes that speak for the difference we make in promoting rule of law.
Willem van Nieuwkerk on behalf of the CILC team