Logo Botnar

Our Focus is Child Health
and Wellbeing. Worldwide.

Fondation Botnar is a charitable foundation established with the core purpose to support children’s basic needs throughout the world. It was founded in Basel in 2003 to continue the philanthropic work of the Botnar family. Our focus is health, nutrition and education.

We have supported many compelling projects over the years and are now in a process to establish a new strategy. We are currently developing a fresh investment and organisational framework to sustainably manage the capital base.
This will be finalised in 2018.

Investment Portfolios

Fondation Botnar finances projects in the following focus areas.

Artificial Intelligence for Child Wellbeing
We advance digital solutions and the mining of big data to support access to healthcare systems and services.

Cities fit for Children
We work to improve living conditions through smart urban planning.

Research for Children
We promote research to accompany projects in the above priorities by partnering with academic institutions. Our aim is to demonstrate the effectiveness of innovations.

Promoting New Ideas
We support new and innovative ideas if a significant impact can be identified within the above priorities.

Examples from the Field

The following projects describe our commitment and future-focus:

  • Botnar Child Road Safety Challenge

    This initiative, led by Fondation Botnar, is designed to address road safety issues which especially impact children. Six priority countries will be targeted with practical, innovative and evidence-based interventions. Bringing together government, civil society and the private sector is key to the approach. Proposals from multi-sectoral consortiums focused on municipal road safety are sought. The Global Road Safety Partnership manages the project for Fondation Botnar.


  • Social Inclusion – Bacău, Romania

    Romania’s Bacău region rates amongst the poorest in Europe, where children, especially from Roma families, live in extreme poverty. Fondation Botnar contributes to a partnership by UNICEF, Terre des Hommes and Norwegian Grants which aims to develop, together with Romanian government agencies, a scalable package of support measures for children and their families. More than 54,000 children benefit from Fondation Botnar’s support.

  • Botnar Research Professorship for Paediatric Environmental Medicine

    This research professorship in environmental medicine, specifically focused on children’s health, began in 2012 at the University of Basel with our financial backing. From June 2017, Prof. Dr. Pablo Sinues takes on the role, and until 2022 will conduct research into paediatric respiratory conditions, such as asthma, and paediatric systems biology. His research activities also include the non-invasive diagnostics of lung diseases (especially air pollution-related) as well as the monitoring of pharmacological active substances, assisted by mass-spectrometry.

Entrepreneurial Spirit

Fondation Botnar is driven by a spirit of entrepreneurship and innovation, reflected in our operational principles. Innovative Financing is our preferred model. We hold to a fully-engaged, dialogue-rich and equal partnering relationship with recipient institutions.

Grant Applications

At present, we are developing a digital grant project management platform. Please do not submit any proposals in the meantime and consult our website as from mid-November 2017 for more information. Only proposals submitted via the platform will be considered.

Please note that Fondation Botnar focuses solely on the strategic investment portfolios described above. We will not support any project that falls outside these parameters. We are not engaged in emergency relief nor are we active in crisis and conflict zones. We do not support individuals; neither religious, faith-based or political organisations, nor organisations involved in areas which undermine public health (e.g. tobacco, alcohol, drugs, weapons, prostitution, pornography, violence etc).

Management Team

Dr. Aline Cossy-Gantner, Chief Learning Officer

Dr. Stefan Germann, Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Susanna Hausmann-Muela, Chief Program Officer

Eva Moldovanyi, Junior Professional Officer

Karin Schumacher, Chief Operating Officer

David Suhr, MSc, Junior Professional Officer

Board and Governance

Dr. Otto Bruderer

Dr. Martin Lenz

Dr. Peter Lenz, President

Elsbeth Müller (Rep. UNICEF)

Camil Alexandru Perian (Rep. founder’s family)

Prof. Dr. Joachim Seelig (Rep. Canton Basel-City)

Fondation Botnar is a member of Swiss Foundations, the association of grant-making foundations in Switzerland. We commit to best practice governance in line with the principles and recommendations of the Swiss Foundation Code. Our accounting follows the guidelines of Swiss GAAP FER 21 for charitable social non-profit-organisations. Our activities are supervised by the Supervisory Authority for Foundations, Swiss Federal Department of Home Affairs.


Fondation Botnar
Elisabethenstrasse 15
4051 Basel, Switzerland

Fondation Botnar will move to new offices in the centre of Basel (St. Alban-Vorstadt 56) in early 2018. A comprehensive website will be available in 2018.

+41 61 201 04 74