22.09.2021

Swiss Solidarity turns 75 - nearly two billion francs donated thanks to extraordinary Swiss generosity

75 years ago, on 26 September 1946, Radio Sottens (today the Swiss National Radio) in Lausanne broadcasted its first episode of the now infamous programme "Chaîne du Bonheur" (Swiss Solidarity). Thanks to the astounding solidarity of the Swiss people, donations of almost 2 billion Swiss francs have since been used to finance 5,097 projects in Switzerland and abroad.

The Swiss Solidarity impact

Swiss Solidarity organised a total of 257 fundraising campaigns and in cooperation with Swiss partner organisations, was able to provide countless people basic aid necessary for their survival and future. This aid has mostly aimed to support reconstruction projects after earthquakes, hurricanes and other natural disasters, victims of wars and conflicts as well as programs targeting the well-being of children.

"For 75 years, Swiss Solidarity has been able to work with the SRG and private media to help people in need thanks to the trust of the Swiss people. This generous support during and after all major crises is unique; together we stand for a Switzerland of solidarity."
Pascal Crittin, President of Swiss Solidarity and Director of RTS

The origins of Swiss Solidarity

On 26 September 1946, armed with the wish to help those suffering from the consequences of the Second World War, two radio producers from Lausanne, Jack Rollan and Roger Nordmann, launched the first Swiss Solidarity appeal on Radio Sottens in support of children suffering in the aftermath of the war. Soon after, their own radio programme was born: the “Chaîne du Bonheur”, in English “Swiss Solidarity”, in which whomever made a wish come true would call for the realisation of a new wish. In the beginning, donations in kind were collected – and the studio rooms were often flooded with packages and relief goods.

Swiss Solidarity’s 75th birthday celebrations from the 12th to 17th of December 2021

From the 12th to the 17th of December, to mark its 75th birthday, we are organizing a Solidarity Week in collaboration with the SRG. The eventful week shall conclude its celebrations with a fundraising day in support of children in need.

Swiss Solidarity's 75th birthday celebrations from the 12th to 17th of December 2021

75 years in figures

Since our beginning, 75 years ago, we have:

The largest fundraiser took place in 2004/05 after the tsunami in South-East Asia, with a total of 227 million Swiss francs donated.