Fondation Botnar was founded in 2003 by Marcela Botnar to continue the philanthropy of herself and her late husband, Octav Botnar. We remain true to our humble family roots by keeping the Botnar family name, maintaining the Botnar’s philanthropic legacy, and through continuing to finance and support several targeted legacy investments.
Octav and Marcela Botnar’s only child Camelia Eugenia Botnar was born on 14th August 1952 in Bucharest, Romania.
Camelia was known to be intelligent and strong-willed. She initially spent some time at the Lycée Victor Duruy in Paris before joining her parents in London, where she enrolled at the Lycée Francais Charles de Gaulle. After leaving the Lycée, she studied at a university in Paris, where she met her fiancé. The couple were visiting the United Kingdom for Christmas in December 1972 when they were involved in a car accident which killed Camelia.
The sudden loss of Camelia impacted Marcela and Octav differently. While Marcela was visibly heartbroken and visited Camelia’s grave in Gunnersbury Cemetery whenever she was in London, Octav, on the other hand, focused even more on building up his business. He settled his growing fortune into a philanthropic trust and, over the years, established and funded several large and remarkable philanthropic projects in Camelia’s name. Following Octav’s death, Marcela continued philanthropic giving, continuing the legacy of her husband and daughter.
Marcela died in Switzerland in November 2014 leaving Fondation Botnar as the sole beneficiary of her will.
Targeted investments continuing the Botnar Family legacy.
Botnar Child Road Safety Challenge
As a homage to Camelia, Fondation Botnar funds and leads the Botnar Child Road Safety Challenge with the Global Road Safety Partnership. The Challenge is designed to address locally relevant road safety problems that affect children in small and mid-sized cities in six priority countries with practical, innovative and evidence-based interventions.