How Swiss Solidarity works

Swiss Solidarity is a foundation that raises funds for humanitarian relief projects and works with the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR and Swiss relief organizations to this end. Swiss Solidarity is thus able to benefit from the specific support of the public radio and television services. It also collaborates with the private media. Work in the field is carried out by experienced Swiss relief organizations according to precise stipulations. Swiss Solidarity is currently working with 25 aid organizations.

In the event of a catastrophe, on-the-spot and emergency relief is provided extremely rapidly and without unnecessary bureaucracy: in case of the tsunami disaster for example, funds were provided before the first donations had been received.Based on experience, the major part of the donations is used for renewal work (rehabilitation) and rebuilding. These are the most effective forms of relief in the long-term. Such projects are examined and approved by a special Project Commission (COPRO-INT + COPRO-CH) and monitored on-the spot during realization. This relief work may last one or several years, depending on the extent of the operation. Funds earmarked for specific relief work do not simply lie idle in a bank account but, according to the rules of the foundation, must be «parked» to earn interest.

Swiss Solidarity uses this interest to fund social benefits in Switzerland, children’s support in the Third World and if possible its own operation. This non-speculative investment policy is strictly regulated and carried out by financial experts on the basic principles of ethics and fairness (e.g. towards the environment and the Third World) and monitored by a group of auditors. Swiss Solidarity funds are thus subject to three forms of financial control and are among the best administered in Switzerland.

Swiss Solidarity received the 1999 International Human Rights Award in recognition of its work.

Swiss Solidarity is a foundation, started as an initiative of the Swiss public media SRG SSR | Partnership & collaboration

  • Keystone
  • Swisscom
  • SRG SSR alt




One picture often says more than a thousand words. Thanks to the partnership with the internationally operating Swiss picture agency Keystone, Swiss Solidarity has free and rapid access to recent pictures at any time. 

The Keystone picture agency takes a Swiss view of our country and the world. A team of 20 full-time photographers throughout Switzerland as well as international partner agencies ensure that no current event is missed. As the largest picture agency in Switzerland, Keystone has an almost unending store of material on Swiss social history (around 11 million archive images).




A national fundraising day is unthinkable without the means of Swisscom: In six regional fundraising centers, provided by Swisscom as well, between 120 and 150 phone lines are in use. This meant that, at the Tsunami’s fundraising day, over 70’000 calls were managed. On fundraising days, this service is free of charge.

The internet as a means of communication is vital for Swiss Solidarity, too. Therefore, Swisscom supports Swiss Solidarity’s web presence year after year with a considerable contribution. Swisscom (formerly PTT) has been an abiding partner for Swiss Solidarity for over sixty years.



Swiss Solidarity originated in 1946 from a radio show in western Switzerland – the first fundraising campaign was for the benefit of the orphans of World War II. The idea became more and more successful, and in 1983, Swiss Solidarity was granted the status of a foundation initiated by the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG. Today, Swiss Solidarity is a foundation that raises funds for humanitarian relief projects and works with the SRG SSR.

On national solidarity and fundraising days, Swiss Solidarity demonstrates just what is meant by «idée suisse»: The solidarity and support of Switzerland’s entire population. This is only possible because the SRG SSR idée suisse supports Swiss Solidarity with its free broadcastings. Swiss Solidarity itself is – with a few exceptions – not a relief organization, but rather a solidarity network, cooperating with 25 relief organizations.

Additionally, the company’s entities SRF, RTS, RTR, RSI are all represented in the foundation board.