As IATI’s membership reaches nearly 100 organisations, we spoke to Felix Gnehm, Director of Solidar Suisse about the NGO’s decision to join the initiative.
Tell us about Solidar Suisse. What does your organisation do?
Solidar Suisse is a non-profit organisation fighting for fair work, democratic participation and social justice worldwide. We deliver over 60 projects across four continents, and provide disaster relief and humanitarian aid. The Solidar Suisse development programme is supported by SDC, the Swiss government agency for Development and Cooperation.
We decided to join IATI because first and foremost, we believe that well-practiced transparency can be empowering for our partners and constituencies in the global South.
Why has Solidar Suisse become a member of IATI?
We decided to join IATI because first and foremost, we believe that well-practiced transparency can be empowering for our partners and constituencies in the global South. Secondly, joining IATI creates trust and confidence in Solidar Suisse’s work among donors - both private and institutional. Also a key goal in Solidar Suisse’s 2020-2024 strategy is that “we aim to become an accessible and transparent NGO”.
Why is it important to publish your spending to IATI?
Firstly, there are very few reasons not to share and publish data to IATI.
We believe open data can enable development and humanitarian communities to collectively set the right priorities. If the sector lacks data and information on who does what with which financial volume, it seems impossible for organisations to align, coordinate and benefit from synergies. The increase of IATI data can allow partner countries to smartly weave development funds into their own development fabric.
We believe open data can enable development and humanitarian communities to collectively set the right priorities.
In addition, people on the recipient side of international cooperation have a right to know who funds what. Donors (including our thousands of small household donors) have the very same right to know what goes where, and what impact is achieved. Finally, IATI data can be used to tell positive stories and generate good media coverage, increasing trust in development and humanitarian work.
What information will you publish to IATI?
We will work hard to publish the data required by the IATI Standard on our financing and projects as soon as we can. We have an annual income of around USD 20 million, which comes from both public (approx. 40%) and private funds (60%). While we already publish most facts and figures on our finances, there is much room to improve and we look forward to publishing our data according to the robust format of the IATI Standard.
How will you engage in IATI as a member?
we are looking forward to meeting IATI members at the virtual Members’ Assembly on 1-2 December
Firstly, we are looking forward to meeting IATI members at the virtual Members’ Assembly on 1-2 December. As a new member, we will focus on publishing our data using the IATI Standard. We look forward to presenting IATI data to Solidar Suisse’s staff worldwide, to our governing bodies, our members, partners and donors. I anticipate a strong interest from other Swiss NGOs and will be happy to share our experiences of publishing IATI data with them.
For more information about IATI's members and to find out how to join the initiative visit Join IATI.