In 2011, Swiss Solidarity received more than 62 million francs in donations for victims of disasters. At the same time, over 54 million francs were used worldwide to help fund 224 relief projects by the foundation’s partner organizations. As the 2011 Annual Report that was published today shows, Swiss Solidarity came to the aid of people in Switzerland in financial need as well as victims of natural disasters with one-off support totalling 1.33 million francs.
Swiss Solidarity launched three fundraising appeals in 2011 for the victims of the armed conflict in Libya, the earthquake and tsunami in Japan and the population affected by the East Africa famine. In December, the joint fundraising appeal «Every Rappen Counts» by Swiss Radio & TV SRF and Swiss Solidarity collected donations for mothers in need. Together with other permanent campaigns, a total of 62,543,246 francs came together in the Swiss Solidarity account. These donations are being ring-fenced for use over several years: around 15% for emergency relief, a further 70% (based on experience) for rehabilitation and reconstruction and around 15% to sustainably secure and develop the relief projects. In 2011, Swiss Solidarity used 2% of donations to cover its operating costs.
Long-term global aid
In 2011, Swiss Solidarity helped finance 224 relief projects in 56 countries run by partner organizations. These were mainly housing, water and healthcare projects in Haiti, Pakistan, Japan, East Africa and Latin America. Swiss Solidarity’s project leaders visited Haiti and Pakistan together with specialists in the fields of reconstruction and water projects, in order to obtain a full picture of the progress made and share their experiences with all partners.
Aid in Switzerland
In conjunction with social services, Swiss Solidarity supported 2903 persons in financial need with a total sum of 1,217,211 francs in 2011. In July and October, several Swiss regions were hit by severe storms that left extensive damage. The permanent aid fund «Natural Disasters Switzerland» enabled Swiss Solidarity to provide support amounting to almost 120,000 francs. These funds benefited affected persons in the cantons Appenzell Ausserrhoden, Bern, Graubünden and Lucerne.
New challenges in 2012
In addition to the looming crisis in the Sahel, for which Swiss Solidarity opened an account in March 2012, the reconstruction work in Haiti and Pakistan remains at the centre of Swiss Solidarity’s and its partner organizations’ focus. For Swiss Solidarity’s new managing director Tony Burgener, the close collaboration with partner relief organizations and cooperation with SRG SSR is a priority. «Every event, every disaster and every relief project represents a new challenge that we look forward to addressing with the support of our strong partners and an efficient and experienced team,» Burgener said.