Dansk version
Front page
What is the Foundation?
The Projects
The Voice of the Third World - et projekt
Miljøprojektet Floryl -
et projekt
Fondens bidrag til bekæmpelse af HIV/AIDS i Afrika
Spørgsmål med svar
Har staten ført tilsyn?
Hvem må en fond støtte?
Erik Werlauffs responsum
Må Fonden støtte en erhvervsvirksomhed i udlandet?
Aage Michelsens responsum
Henrik Christrup(H): Verdict highly unlikely.
Fondens bidragydere
Fondens tidligere bestyrelse
Articles and messages
Ekspertudtalelser om Fondens projekter
Support to Humanitarian Purposes
Til fremme af forskning
Til beskyttelse af natur- miljøet
En hilsen fra Fonden til fremtiden

 

What is "The Foundation"?

The Foundation was established on January 19, 1987, the founding payment of 200.000 DKr, was paid by the founders Rikke Viholm and Tove Birkø who also signed the articles.

The economical basis of "The Foundation" is donations made by agreements and other gifts. The Foundation receives donations from 335 people who have signed a deed of gift where they have committed themselves to contribute to the Foundation 15% of their income, for a period of 11 years.

According to the Danish law (Ligningsloven) the contributors can deduct this amount from their taxes.

What we have, is a joint venture between a privately formed and supported Foundation at one side - and the public, the state, on the other. A beautiful "marriage" where everyone contributes and everyone are" winners" at the same time. And where the "winners" first and foremost are the good objectives of the Foundation; to support humanitarian purposes, promote research and protect the environment.

These 3 objectives are contained in the name of the Foundation and all have, each in its own way, an enormous impact on our lives and future on earth.

Humanitarian purposes - efforts to relieve human suffering.

In 1948, the Worlds Declaration on Human Rights was carried out in the newly established UN. The 48 member countries voted for the declaration - today there are 171 countries. This was the first time, that people's fundamental rights were internationally recognised.

The declaration stresses, both in its introduction and in the articles, the importance of improving human living conditions and each individual's right to a life in dignity.

Article 25, stk. 1 in the Declaration says:

"(1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control".

The Declaration expressed a vision - and it still does. But in the course of the 50 years that have passed, the importance of the Human Right Declaration, has grown.

These 30, quite simple, articles, set a standard for peoples and societies, which still need a lot of work to live up to. We who are the promoters and the contributors to the "Foundation", wish to relate to these fundamental decisions with our lives and work.

It is nothing new, that people offer their fellow man a helping hand to ease pain and suffering, but it gets a new dimension in a world , where there is a common decision, as the Declaration of Human Rights. One must measure one's own situation in a new light, look at the world with new eyes and place continuously higher demands as to what one will accept.

Need and hunger, disease, illiteracy, war, natural disasters, ethnic cleansing and other outrageousness ravage hundreds of millions of lives, and it is well known, that although the world's joint wealth has increased the past 100 years, the number of poor and suffering people has grown, and the gap between rich and poor is expanding.

Of course, there are big issues,  an enormous amount of people need help, and it is easy to feel like a ”drop in the ocean”. But isn’t the ocean made out of drops? There must never be a question whether  it is worth doing something.

Basically,  this is about the view of human nature, how we wish to live our lives and share it with others.

It is about sharing one’ s surplus – and thereby generate more surplus.

It is about “doing good” – not in order to receive praise or acknowledgment, but because it is good for people to show humanity. And this is how we wish others to treat us, if we are in need.

The Foundation’s support for humanitarian purposes, have gone directly to relief projects and to the combat and prevention of one of the most far-reaching epidemic of mankind; AIDS.

Research

As man’s knowledge and insight have increased,  the areas for basic research has changed character.  At the same time the need for applied research and action research have increased - simply, because,  with the growing mass of knowledge, insight and new technology, a wealth of new possibilities have been opened to us.

When people don’t have access to clean water, it is not because we don’t know how to produce clean water!. There are other problems – that these people don’t have access to the applied methods, that there is not enough money, or that the applied methods, can’t be used globally.

We might even run into the problem that there is not enough water for the world’s population to have a consumption as high as those who consume the most, today. When we insist that it is undignified  for people not to have access to clean water, we must make  research efforts to find a solution, which, on this occasion, can give clean water to all and not reduce anything from anybody. But first we must acknowledge this to be a worthy research task.

It is a research that demands cooperation between different scientific fields. It is a research which is about making use of the accumulated knowledge, combine it in new ways, and apply it to both new and well known  tasks and problems and by doing so, clear new ways in both understanding and practice.

There is a tendency, that research only can be carried out by a small, specially selected group of people – usually from the rich part of the world. But with the modern development and access to knowledge, it is obvious that research shall be extended to be a matter to many more people.
We can promote research by supporting a lot more people and institutions to throw themselves over research tasks ahead.

The Foundation has with it’s donations,  been an active part in promoting research into such wide -ranging fields as energy, agriculture, medicine, sale of used clothes, models for disease prevention and –control, TV-production and “building bridges”  between people in different parts of the world.

 

Protection of the natural environment

The meaning of ”Protection of the natural environment” is to combat pollution of air, water and soil and protect endangered animals and plant species.

The earth is a wonderful planet. It has an immense wealth of millions of plant-and animal species and only a fraction has been mapped by man. Through billions of years, mechanisms which we don’t yet fully understand, have made sure to keep the  oxygen in the earth's atmosphere exactly at a level where it secures continued life – not too low and not too high. Through billions of years, other mechanisms have secured that the 30% increase in energy outlet from the sun, which has taken place, has not had a detrimental effect on life on earth. Bacteria and microorganisms have lived longer than any other life through their remarkable ability to “cooperate” (symbioses)

It is in this context that the protection of the natural environment, should be understood. Of course we must fight pollution of  the  fundamental elements such as soil, air and water, but we must not forget that the human being is a very humble and integrated part of these.

The environmental projects that the Foundation has supported have all been examples of projects that have pointed forward. Solar energy, wind power, biogas plants, protection of the rain forest, care taking of nature reserves, establishing, and running energy forests,  are all attempts to create examples of how we can organize our lives and cover our needs in harmony with  nature.

When working with the natural environment, there is no point in talking about national boarders. The planet earth
is one, and the force and mechanism of nature apply across every manmade boarder. The same apply for the
other areas  which are within the purpose of the Foundation. The Foundation interpret its purpose globally. This
can be seen by the projects which have been designed and supported with the help of the Foundation.

 The 335 individuals, who during a period of 14 years, have donated approximately 75 million DKr in gifts to the Foundation, have given this donation from an ordinary salary. Every little helps. A lot has come out of these money.

 

First and foremost, the Foundation has had the pleasure of being able to contribute within its the purposes; humanitarian purposes, promotion of research, and protection of the natural environment.

 

More than 680 people have been directly involved as the motive power to carry out the 29 projects, that the Foundation has supported.

 

6000 people have worked directly and have benefited directly by the completion of  the projects.

 

Furthermore, 60.000 refugees have received emergency aid packages and in the southern part of Africa, 600.000 people in 6 countries have access to a HOPE-centre, where they can receive advice about HIV/AIDS – they have also access to information materials and are in the process of organizing themselves in the battle against the epidemic. On top of this, millions of people have seen and enjoyed the “One World Channel's “TV- programmes in Europe, Northern Africa and South East Asia.

 

The Foundation has supported projects which have been carried out all over the world; Denmark, Kosovo, other countries in Europe, Morocco, Benin, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, Namibia, Mozambique, Tahiti, China, Malaysia. This means that people from many different countries have come closer together in a deeper understanding of each other and for the responsibility, we as human beings have for the common earth that we live on.

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