Our abundance helps disadvantaged people. A long-term commitment as a basis for self-help is real help.
The FCTrelief association is a relief organization that supports and promotes the socially disadvantaged as well as various projects in Switzerland and abroad. The aim of the work is to connect interested people to develop projects together that disadvantaged people can look into the future consciously and hopefully. The surplus of one helps the lack of others, beyond the daily needs, so that important life structures and a possitive future can be made possible.
Heart for Bulgaria
FCTrelief founded this foundation in Bulgaria. The focus is on the individual support of disadvantaged people in various life situations.
Challenges in Bulgaria
- Around 50,000 orphaned or abandoned children
- Corruption prevents economic and social advancement
- Poverty in rural areas, especially among minorities such as the Roma
- The economic situation in the country hits orphans, the elderly and disabled people the hardest.
Activities of Heart for Bulgaria
- Employment of five retired women, who care for orphans in homes 1 to 1, giving them acceptance and social values and thus at the same time they are able to earn something to subsidise their low pension.
- Financial support for young people so that they can continue their education.
- Support for pensioners in poor conditions who can scarcely live on their pension.
- Support for sick people who can not afford medication and surgery.
FCTrelief Zambia Foundation
FCTrelief started this foundation in Zambia in October 2014. The focus is on the individual support of currently 85 disadvantaged children and teenagers of school age. Only a school leaving certificate and a training enables the children to have a future perspective.
Challenges in Zambia
- Two-thirds of the rural population has no electricity and limited access to water via water points.
- High infant and maternal mortality rates, poor medical care
- Many children are underweight, undernourished and susceptible to preventable diseases
- High HIV infection rate, in 2015 20% of the population were AIDS orphans
- Minimal opportunities for school education with high school drop-out rates
Activities of FCTrelief Zambia
- Children and adolescents are enrolled in a support program that provides them with constant schooling by paying school fees, school uniforms and school materials.
- Tutoring to give a deeper understanding of the school material
- Food and medical care are important prerequisites for academic performance
- FCTrelief is in partnership with the farm of FCTestates, which offers basic agricultural training.
FCTestates Zambia Ltd
FCTestates Zambia Ltd manages a farm near Lusaka and provides support to the FCTrelief Zambia Foundation with training, jobs and food from the farm.
The vision for the future
The operation of the farm should create a cycle. The growing size of the business and the yield of the farm make it possible for longer-term financial resources to flow into the education of children. After leaving school, some of these children and young people will again have training places available on the farm.
Heiner & Christine Merk, as head of the board, together with the board of directors bear the overall responsibility and support the operational management of the plant in Bulgaria and Zambia.
Gordon & Veneta Merk-Rusenova manage the association Heart for Bulgaria.
Eugene Mtonthola and Tabea Kusongwa-Zuber head the FCTrelief Zambia Foundation.
Patrick Kusongwa is the operational manager of Farm FCTestates Zambia.