The Support Group at Swiss TPH

In 1989 staff of Swiss TPH founded the “Support Group at Swiss TPH”, an association of employees and friends of Swiss TPH with a constitution, a managing board and an annual general assembly. Anyone can become a member.
The association’s aim is to offer assistance to people and associations in resource-poor countries - particularly in the sense of helping people to help themselves. The raised funds are used entirely for the benefit of the projects.

Regulations for awarding support to a project

  • Support of a local implementing agency/organization
  • Support of poverty reducing measures
  • Helping people to help themselves
  • Sustainability
  • Good cost efficiency
  • Support of projects with clear objective, well defined start and end, prolongation possible after assessment of previous phase
  • Detailed project description with transparent budget
  • Maximum budget: CHF 3'000 - 5'000
  • Outlining of the partner’s own contribution as part of the budget (contribution can be working hours or materials, not necessarily financial)
  • Contact person of the Swiss TPH to oversee the project on site

How to Apply for Project Funding

Become a member or donate

Helenvale Poets, South Africa

Helenvale, Port Elizabeth, is a vibrant but crime-torn, poverty stricken area. Young people often have no guided recreation or hobbies, and youth typically have no jobs. Many social problems emerge from the impoverished circumstances in which people dwell, including drugs dependency, alcohol abuse, gangsterism and related crimes. The Helenvale Poets project was initiated in 2011 and offers young people a meditative, creative and productive space that members describe as “therapeutic”. Participants work on and develop their verbal art products with the help of mentors. In 2017, the Support Group financed the purchase of 10 laptops for the young artists. To date, they have already produced 7 books of poems.

Pailin Kids Project, Cambodia

Pailin province is considered one of the most heavily mined regions in the world, with very high child abuse rates and significant malnutrition. Only a few children go to school regularly. The Community & Home-Based Care for Pailin Kids project aims to create a safe place for the children in Pailin where they get a home, food, education and basic health care. Orphans find a permanent home there, but the project also takes care of out-of-school children who have to work and cannot go to school. The Support Group helped the project to set up a library and to build a playground for the children.  

Health Centres Guatemala

The villages of San Marcos and La Romana are very isolated in the tropical rainforest of Guatemala. The majority of the inhabitants are indigenous Maya living in extreme poverty and having no access to health services. The Support Group financed the material for the construction of two minimal health units (MHU), comprising of one room divided by half inside, a latrine and access to solar power. These MHUs also enable the operation of a syndromic surveillance platform for zoonotic disease control in this region.

Project for People with Disabilities in Ethiopia

People with disabilities often face discrimination and exclusion in Ethiopia. Children are cast out by their families, as adults they end up homeless and unemployed. The project "Emmanuel" has the vision of enabling people with disabilities to live independently. In a workshop in Soddo, disabled people produce and sell crutches , wheelchairs and twikes. Those who cannot afford to pay for the mobility aids, can  work off their debts by helping in the production of crutches. The Support Group financed the material for new mobility aids.

Chin Cherry Sewing Project in Myanmar

The Chin region is rich in local traditional fabrics. The Chin Cherry project is an income generating project that aims to promote small business. In regular sewing courses in the youth centre in Kalaymyo, sewers learn how to produce modern bags with the traditional cloths to generate an income source for themselves and their families. The Support Group financed 7 sewing machines for these workshops as well as 8 weaving looms for the women's group in Minlah that produces the traditional Chin fabrics.

School Garden Project in Ecuador

In 2010 the NGO Cielo Azul initiated the "school garden" pilot project in the community of Cambugán in the highlands of Ecuador. The self-managed fruit orchards and vegetable gardens have been laid out according to ancestral knowledge, using old, Andean cultivation methods. The students helped to plant local crops of the Andean region like amaranth, medical plants and root vegetables  – all of which should help ensure a balanced diet for the students as well. The Support Group financed seeds, seedlings and gardening tools for the plantation of three new school gardens in San Agustín de Cajas, Desaguadero and Eugenio Espejo.
The harvest of the school garden in Cambugán is now sufficient to provide for the student’s lunches three days a week. Any excess crops are distributed amongst the most financially disadvantaged families.


Fishing Boat Project in the Philippines

During the Haiyan hurricane in 2013 many fishermen in the Philippines lost their boats and thus their means of existence. The Support Group financed three new boats for a local relief project in Iloilo.

Educational Project in Ghana

The NGO Children of the Light runs year-round educational programs in Ghana for children aged 4 to 16 years to help children break out of the harsh cycle of inadequate education and poverty. Currently it is building a Learning Centre in Pepease-Akuapem in the Eastern region of Ghana. The Support Group facilitated the construction works by financing a septic tank, the sanitary equipment and the roof of the building.

Sanitation & Hygiene Project in Tanzania

The NGO ACTNGONO initiated a water and sanitation project in the Kyebitembe Primary School in the Muleba district in Tanzania to provide the students with clean and adequate sanitation facilities. The Support Group financed the construction of 5 latrines each for the female and male students. Construction works were done by volunteers, mainly the parents of the students. Other schools in the district showed their interest.

Reforestation Project in the Philippines

Together with the local government and with endorsement from the Swiss Embassy the local youth group Youth Earthsavers Movement (YES-Move) launched a project to reforest and rehabilitate the mangrove areas in seven villages (barangays) around Lavezares in Northern Samar. Local fishermen were actively involved through information campaigns and training courses, so that they themselves can protect and manage the mangrove forest in the long term. The Support Group funded the project. Meanwhile, the volunteers planted  94,500 mangrove seedlings, conducted training sessions and installed 14 information boards.

Maternity Renovation Project in Togo

Volunteer members of the Peace Corps based in the Savanna region north of Togo addressed us in 2012 for supporting the renovation of the maternity hospital in Timbou district that consisted basically of just one room, allowing not much privacy to the pregnant women giving birth (up to 4000 each year) and the HIV-positive and AIDS patients that are treated there as well. During its renovation parts of the old building were demolished to make rooms for windows and doors, new walls and a ceiling were installed and due to very efficient use of resources, the building is now also supplied with electricity and connected to a newly built water tower.

Home for the Elderly in Indonesia

The 'Hosiana' house in Tomohon, North Sulawesi, Indonesia, originally planned as a retirement home, opened its doors beginning 2016. The operators realised soon that a day care house would better match the needs of the elderly and their families, thus the concept was revised. The old people come now in the morning to rest, play cards, cook together or do some gardening and go home in the evening. Thanks to the financial assistance of the Support Group, furniture and other equipment for the Day Care House could be purchased. There is a great demand for more day care homes of this kind in Indonesia.

Chairman: Peter Steinmann, Deputy Chairman: Dagmar Batra, Communications: Valérie Busson, Cashier: Sabine Zbären

Project Management: Christian Auer, Nadja Cereghetti, Helena Greter, Michael Käser, Helen Prytherch

Auditors: Hans-Peter Beck, Hanspeter Marti

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Selected projects at this location: