WISE was co-founded by Dian and Yoke Pean Thye towards the end of 2015. At the time, they were pursuing post-graduate studies at the Environmental Engineering Department of Institut Teknologi Bandung (ITB), Indonesia. The founding of WISE was motivated by the need for things in the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sector to be done differently in order to create real meaningful change. 

With some funding from the ASEAN Youth Volunteer Program, WISE ran our first project in early 2016 with Himpunan Mahasiswa Teknik Lingkunan at ITB. From there, we expanded our activities to Cambodia and Singapore, as well as to other causes, including environmental action, education, and migrant work.