In its 2021 edition “The 300 wealthiest people of Switzerland”, Bilan magazine devotes a special report to philanthropy and in particular to continuing education in this field.
As Sabrina Grassi, Director General of the Swiss Philanthropy Foundation points out in her interview, “Philanthropy has always been able to work. But now there is a desire to make it more professional, more efficient and the regulatory framework is becoming more complex.”
To compensate this increasing complexity, various training programs have emerged in recent years. These have been proposed in particular by the public sector, through schools and universities such as the Geneva Centre for philanthropy (GCP) at the University of Geneva and the Center for Philanthropy Studies at the University of Basel (CEPS).
Swiss Philanthropy Foundation, as a private actor, is also present in this panorama and has been offering its own training, the “Master Class in Philanthropy” since 2018 in partnership with the CEPS and the GCP. This three-day training course offers both philanthropists who wish to engage in philanthropy, as well as legal and financial advisors who accompany them, and finally members of foundation boards or management, to acquire the basic tools necessary for a better daily practice of philanthropy. As Sabrina Grassi points out, “It is very easy to create a foundation in Switzerland, but people don’t realize the amount of work that it represents. Our trainings allow them to realize that there are other models, with hosting foundations.”
For Sabrina Grassi, all of these short and long-term continuing education programs, offered by both the private and public sectors, create very good complementarities that meet different needs. While underlining the tendency to move towards effective philanthropy with impact, she reminds us: “Philanthropy must not be distorted, there must be an initial impulse that comes from the heart. The impulse of the heart and the desire for efficiency can coexist. A good thing is to always ask yourself what you want to achieve with your donation.”