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 the health and wellbeing of children in secondary cities.

Research for Children
We promote research to accompany projects in health, nutrition and education 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.

  • Robotic surgery for paediatric patients

    Victor Babeş University of Medicine and Pharmacy in Timişoara, Romania, has received a surgical robot to implement robotic surgery for paediatric patients. The project will run from 2018 until 2022 at the Children's Hospital Louis Turcanu. Robotic surgery can be used in a wide variety of child disorders. The project aims to develop a strong point of reference for robotic paediatric surgery in Central and Eastern Europe – Timişoara being the only such program.

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 spring 2018 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.

Exclusion criteria:

Fondation Botnar does not support:

  • Emergency relief
  • Humanitarian relief
  • Projects in crisis and conflict zones
  • Projects that replace state funding
  • Projects in the areas of culture and music
  • Contributions to individual persons
  • Contributions to publication costs
  • Contributions to exhibitions
  • Contributions to infrastructure funding
  • Religious faith-based organisations
  • Political organisations
  • Organisations that are involved in areas which undermine public health (e.g. tobacco, alcohol, drugs, weapons, prostitution, pornography, violence)

Management Team

Dr. Aline Cossy-Gantner

Chief Learning Officer

Dr. Stefan Germann

Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Susanna Hausmann-Muela

Chief Program Officer

Thuy-Anh Huynh-Le

Grants Administrator

Szandra McCrory

Executive Assistant

Eva Moldovanyi

Junior Professional Officer

Karin Schumacher

Chief Operating Officer

Sushant Sharma

Chief Investment Officer

David Suhr

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 SwissFoundations, 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.


Postal address:
Fondation Botnar
Elisabethenstrasse 15
4051 Basel, Switzerland

Access to the office via
Henric Petri-Strasse 9
(2nd Floor)

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