The UN reports that the largest humanitarian crisis since the Second World War is unfolding in Africa. Swiss Solidarity and its partner relief organizations raised the alarm in mid-March and launched an appeal for donations. One million Swiss francs has already been raised. Now Swiss Solidarity and the Swiss Broadcasting Company (SRG SSR) are organizing a national fundraising day on 11th April for the victims of famine in Africa.
Despite the lack of media coverage, in recent weeks the Swiss public has shown its great concern over this humanitarian disaster and has demonstrated its solidarity with the victims. The national fundraising day on 11th April is a response to the dramatic situation unfolding in Africa and to the Swiss public’s willingness to donate.
The national fundraising day is being organized by Swiss Solidarity and the Swiss Broadcasting Company (SRG SSR) and is supported by Swiss Solidarity’s partner relief organizations, an association of private radio stations (‘Privatradios pro Glückskette’), and other private media outlets. Numerous fundraising events will be organized by the public.
From 6 o’clock in the morning until midnight on 11th April, over 300 volunteers in four SRG SSR studios in Zurich, Chur, Lugano and Geneva will receive donation pledges via telephone. On this day, SRG SSR media and private radio stations will be promoting the appeal, encouraging people to donate and reporting on the work of Swiss Solidarity’s partner NGOs.
On the fundraising day, Swiss Solidarity and SRG SSR will be using social media intensively. Swiss Solidarity is calling on schools, companies and associations to organize fundraisers for famine victims in Africa, with a special online platform (handeln.glueckskette.ch) to this effect. The public can also follow some of the events live on Facebook, Twitter und Instagram. Interviews, videos and photos will provide a closer picture of what is happening in Africa and enable members of the public to be directly involved.
Swiss Solidarity’s partner relief organizations are already operating in Africa, but there is not enough money to continue their work in helping the local population. In South Sudan, where access to the worst hit regions is severely restricted, HEKS, Medair, Caritas Switzerland, the Swiss Red Cross and Terre des hommes – helping children worldwide are providing emergency relief to several thousand people, distributing food, water and medical aid. In Somalia, where the situation has deteriorated recently owing to a cholera epidemic, Save the Children, ADRA and Medair are providing relief. In Nigeria, Save the Children is helping large groups of refugees, using individual sums given by Swiss Solidarity.
Donations for victims of the famine in Africa can also be made before the national fundraising day either online at www.swiss-solidarity.org, via the Swiss Solidarity app or to post office account 10-15000-6 (with the text “Famine”). Swiss Solidarity payment slips are available at all post offices.