Bastiaan Wouter Haveman was born in 1908 in Wijnjeterp, Friesland. He grew up as a pastor’s son with four brothers and a sister. He obtained his master’s degree in chemical engineering in Delft and subsequently graduated in Dutch law in Leiden. In 1951 he married Louise Hendrika van Loon.

Before 1940 and again after 1945 he worked at the Ministries of Education, Arts and Sciences, General Affairs and from 1950 at the Ministry of Transport, Public Works and Water Management. That same year he was sent as a Dutch delegate to the Special Committee on Refugees and Displaced Persons of the United Nations, which was charged with establishing the International Refugee Organisation.

During the war, Haveman was active in the Dutch Union, after it was banned by the Germans at the end of 1941. In May 1945 he was one of the founders of the Dutch People’s Movement and the Labor Party, where he became a member of the first party board.

In November 1950 he was appointed Emigration Commissioner for the Netherlands. From 1962-1969 he was also Director of the Intergovernmental Committee for European Migration in Geneva. He returned to the Netherlands as a citizen without office.

(original capture) Netherlands Emigration Chief calls on young Eindhoven couple in Sydney. In a packed three—day visit to Sydney, Dr.B.W.Haveman, insisted on finding time to call on a typical Dutch family living in a typical Netherlands Building Society home. The Migration office of the Netherlands Embassy in Sydney took him to meet Frank and Anneke van Asten, who migrated to Australia in 1957 and now have two Australian—born children, Marco, 2 years, and Margaret, 7 months. They have lived in the home for a year. Frank, an accountancy clerk earning £A19 a week, saved enough money to pay for a block of land (£A700) and, with a further £A400 of savings, borrowed £A2,700 from the building society, repayable at £A3.10.0 a week. The van Astens formerly lived at 65A Maastrichter Straat, Valkenswaard, near Eindhoven. After completing a round of formal engagements with Government, financial and shipping representatives — and visiting the van Astens — Dr.Haveman told the Press and television reporters at Mascot airport that he was most impressed with the progress Dutch migrants had made in Australia and was confident that still more Dutch people would emigrate to Australia. AUSTRALIAN OFFICIAL PHOTOGRAPH. June 1960
Dr. Haveman chatted informally with the young van Astens as they showed him proudly around their block of land. In warm winter sunshine Frank van Asten peeled off his jacket to give a gardening demonstration.
(original capture) A group of seven Dutch emigrant families in Sydney, New South Wales, have embarked on a unique home building scheme which will provide them with a modern new home inside twelve months without a penny of advance cash. They have signed up to devote their weekends to communal effort in helping to build the homes, until each has contributed at least 400 hours of labour. This is valued at £A-10-0 an hour (based on weekend pay rates in Australia) and after 400 hours it will represent a £A600 deposit on a building society loan to finance the cost of the house and land. In all the property will then be worth about £A3,500, and the migrant family will occupy it at a repayment rate of £A3-10-0 a week. The idea was worked out for the migrants by the Netherland Building Society of New South Wales and the Migration Office of the Netherlands Embassy in Sydney. While in Sydney recently, the visiting Government Commissioner for Emigration, Dr. B. Haveman, turned the first sod of soil, for the building of the first house under this scheme. The site is at Blacktown, a rapidly expanding area of new development about 15 miles from the centre of Sydney.
The seven families, including a total of 35 children, and Dutch immigrant friends heard Dr. Haveman describe the new scheme as another milestone in the progress of Dutch migration to Australia. The Netherlands Building Society had already helped hundreds of Dutch families to find happiness and security in their new land, and this scheme was an practical idea to meet the needs of some of those families who for one reason or another find it difficult to save the usual cash deposit for a house.
Dr. Haveman is seen speaking, and behind him are Mr. Peter van der Griend (Migration Officer, Netherlands Embassy in Sydney) and Johannes Kop, 38, carpenter, from Parallelweg 178, Den Haag, elected foreman for the building project. Mr. Kop is the father of ten children.
(original capture) Dr. Haveman starts the first house by formally turning the soil on the building estate at Blacktown, watched by Johannes Kop, 38, carpenter, from Parrallelweg 178, Den Hang, foreman for the scheme, and the seven families.