Since 2011, Switzerland is member of the European ESTHER Alliance that promotes institutional health partnerships worldwide.
The Alliance defines institutional health partnerships as “collaborative relationships between at least two institutions based on trust, equality and mutual interest to work as peers towards common objectives. They contribute to the improvement of health services through reciprocal institutional strengthening, capacity building and health workforce development”. ESTHER partners work mostly in low and middle-income countries (LMIC) to tackle priority issues for health and help achieve the UN Global Goals for Sustainable Development.
ESTHER Switzerland uses the model of institutional health partnerships to foster effective north-south and south-south partnerships that can build capacity of the health workforce and health institutions and finally contribute to strengthen health systems and health outcomes. The Secretariat of ESTHER Switzerland is located at the ISPM in Bern.
For its cooperation with ESTHER Switzerland during the period 2016-2018, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) has established two funds to promote institutional health partnerships:
1) Partnerships Grant Fund: this fund will make available up to CHF 300,000 each year for projects focused primarily in sexual and reproductive health and rights including HIV/AIDS
2) Start-up Fund: this fund will make available up to CHF 30,000 to assess new partnership projects that could be managed by ESTHER Switzerland.
Both funds are open to partnerships which include at least one health institution in Switzerland (preference given to hospitals, universities and research institutions) and one health institution of the same type in a low or middle income country. Typical projects focus on service deliver and could aim at the training of health care staff (medical staff, nurses, management positions, etc.). Research projects (e.g., cohort studies) are outside the scope of the present call. For more information on the two funds kindly consult the grant documents which are available on this page.
Thanks to this SDC support, ESTHER Switzerland is now launching its First Call for Projects. The deadline for submission is 18 September, 2016.
More information can be found at http://www.esther-switzerland.ch/grants/