Mission Statement

Swis­s­hand is a non-prof­it orga­ni­za­tion. Its entre­pre­neur­ial approach to devel­op­ment coop­er­a­tion is based on and inspired by its Chris­t­ian and human­i­tar­i­an beliefs.

Our activ­i­ties include a com­bi­na­tion of inten­sive train­ing with an entre­pre­neur­ial focus, the assign­ment of small cred­its, coun­selling and assis­tance. Through these efforts, we enable pri­mar­i­ly proac­tive women and their fam­i­lies in pro­found­ly poor regions, main­ly in Africa, to pur­sue inde­pen­dent activ­i­ties, allow­ing them to secure their liveli­hoods.

Strategy
  1.  We focus on a tar­get­ed selec­tion of pover­ty-strick­en regions with­out access to self-help pro­grammes.
  2.  Our fight gets down to the roots of pover­ty as we enable fam­i­lies to earn an income.
  3.  Eager­ly com­mit­ted women are our pri­ma­ry tar­get group. They will per­force become rôle mod­els for their chil­dren.
  4.  The par­tic­i­pants of the pro­gramme are care­ful­ly select­ed, trained, and assist­ed.
  5.  Sup­port is pro­vid­ed through small, inter­est-bear­ing cred­its which boosts self-reliance.
  6.  We offer small cred­it amounts, afford­able cred­it terms and short cred­it peri­ods.
  7.  Our cred­its are close­ly inter­twined with train­ing, coun­selling and assis­tance; there­fore, they devel­op a pos­i­tive momen­tum.
  8.  No debt trap will open up. As a high rate of repay­ment is achieved, the dona­tions received can be used sev­er­al times.
  9.  The pro­grammes are car­ried out by pro­fi­cient, duly trained and trust­wor­thy local part­ners.
  10.  Progress of the pro­grammes is con­tin­u­ous­ly mon­i­tored.
Management and Organisation

In the field, Swis­s­hand coop­er­ates with pro­fi­cient and reli­able part­ners includ­ing main­ly pri­vate or church-relat­ed devel­op­ment insti­tu­tions and coop­er­a­tives; gov­ern­men­tal agen­cies are, how­ev­er, exclud­ed. Imple­men­ta­tion is mon­i­tored by pro­gramme man­agers based both in Switzer­land and on site.

Stan­dard­ised process­es for the selec­tion of part­ners, train­ing, cred­it assign­ment and con­tin­u­ous mon­i­tor­ing of the pro­grammes ensure a pur­pose­ful and effi­cient use of the means avail­able.

In excep­tion­al cas­es — and as far as it is rec­on­cil­able with our mis­sion — Swis­s­hand can also act as fund­ing part­ner for pro­grammes host­ed by third organ­i­sa­tions.

Finance

The foun­da­tion is financed by dona­tions and lega­cies received from with­in the cir­cle of its founder VCU and from oth­er pri­vate donors, as well as by funds assigned by com­pa­nies, foun­da­tions, church­es, munic­i­pal­i­ties and can­tons.