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A message to our community

Stefan Germann

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Dear colleagues and partners,

In these challenging times it is important to bind further together in our shared values and collective aims. We are grateful you decided to join us in our mission to ensure that every young person can lead a life with good health and dignity as a thriving citizen. We know how deep your commitment runs in fulfilling the joint goals we set together, so we want to share some updates and offer support from our offices here in Switzerland.

In reponse to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have decided to make CHF 20 million available to global research funding efforts around COVID-19, among other select partnerships, which you can learn more about at the bottom of this page.

At Fondation Botnar we are aware of the implications that the COVID-19 pandemic might have on you, your organisations, and the implementation of the projects that we are supporting.

We also know that dealing with this emerging situation requires flexibility in many dimensions; please be assured that Fondation Botnar is working to provide such flexibility to you, our grantees.

Since the establishment of our management office in 2017, we have been working towards the full digitalisation of our operations, and while we still have some further steps we aspire to achieve, we are well-prepared to work remotely. We will continue to administer on-going grants, review submitted applications, process and execute payments, and issue grant agreements for projects that have already been approved. We remain fully committed to realising the projects we set out to achieve together. At the same time, we would also like to ask you for your understanding as we are ourselves affected by the crisis.

All active grants have received further details via email on how to address grant-related issues arising from COVID-19. We will do our best to respond to grant-related requests that are affected by the changing global situation in a timely manner. Given the high number of anticipated inquiries, we will acknowledge receipt of your messages but please expect 3 – 4 weeks to hear back from us with next steps. 

Given the emerging global situation, we have decided to extend the submission deadline for proposals for our Fit for the future call until Tuesday, 14 April 2020, 3pm CET. Please read all related information at the following link.

Thank you for all your efforts, trust and collaboration in the important work you are undertaking in service of our collective goal to improve the wellbeing of young people around the world. We wish you much courage in these unprecedented times and please know we are with you in learning how to better foster resilient programs and partnerships for young people and their communities, no matter what the circumstances.

Best wishes to all for good health – with gratitude,

Stefan Germann

CEO, Fondation Botnar

Read more about other Fondation Botnar supported COVID-19 efforts below: 

  • We have committed a total of CHF 20 million for global research around COVID-19. Read more here.
  • We are awarding CHF 5 million to EPFL for pioneering research programs, including for the development of a digitally scalable, privacy preserving, contact tracing system, and for the development of epidemiological models using real-time data and artificial intelligence (AI) to further predict pandemic spread.
  • We have joined the XPRIZE Pandemic Alliance calling on the global community to unite, collaborate and share information to address immediate needs and find long- term durable solutions to pandemic threats.
  • We are supporting VersusVirus a Swiss-wide 48-hour hackathon to find solutions to the COVID-19 crisis.
  • We have signed the European Philanthropy Statement on COVID-19. Read the statement here.
  • We are supporting our long-standing partner UNICEF Romania with USD 400,000 to purchase medical equipment such as COVID-19 tests and protective equipment. The equipment will allow frontline workers to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and support children and their families in Romania.
The Future Now.
For Young People

Fondation Botnar
St. Alban-Vorstadt 56
4052 Basel
+41 61 201 04 74