Swiss clubs celebrate their birthdays
Over 650 Swiss clubs are established abroad. They bring the Swiss Abroad together and strengthen their ties to Switzerland. Some Swiss clubs are celebrating major and minor anniversaries.
Switzerland is a country that certainly loves its clubs. Three quarters of the population aged 15 and over are members of at least one club or non-profit organisation of an estimated 100,000 associations in Switzerland.
Swiss Abroad have been founding clubs and networking for many years to maintain Swiss traditions, celebrate 1 August together, support each other and chat in their mother tongue. The Council of the Swiss Abroad, the supreme organ of the Organisation of the Swiss Abroad, SwissCommunity, recognises more than 650 Swiss clubs and institutions.
Some of these clubs exist for many years. For example, the Swiss Society Bangkok (SSB) in Thailand celebrated its 90th anniversary last year. The SSB has published a book about its club history from the archives. It describes the exciting events of the SSB from the founding years to the present and reports on stirring experiences of Swiss pioneers, of capable businessmen of old-established Swiss trading companies, but also of adventurers and poachers up to the deserter of the Foreign Legion from Indochina.
Also in 2021, the Swiss Club Tell in San Francisco celebrated its 100th anniversary. For many Swiss who emigrated to the US West Coast, this club was a central institution, and to this day it remains a part of the homeland for its members, as an article on the club's anniversary by the news portal swissinfo.ch illustrates.
The anniversaries of Swiss clubs abroad continue this year: the Societé Suisse de Bordeaux in France, for example, is pleased to celebrate 200 years of club history, which will be honoured in an anniversary book. In an article published by swissinfo.ch (in German or French), the president, Jean-Michel Begey, looks through the archives of the Societé Suisse de Bordeaux, which was originally founded to "help Swiss people in need".
This month, a younger member of the community of the Swiss Abroad celebrates its anniversary: The Schweizer Verein Dresden in Germany is turning 30 and is celebrating the occasion with a steamboat trip on the Elbe.
"The Organisation of the Swiss Abroad, SwissCommunity, congratulates all the clubs celebrating their anniversary on their great commitment to the Fifth Switzerland," says Director Ariane Rustichelli. "Every association is important in keeping the Swiss Abroad connected and strengthening their ties to each other and to Switzerland."
Find out more about Switzerland’s many clubs and get to know the most successful Swiss club in the latest issue of "Swiss Review".
You can find an overview of Swiss clubs and umbrella organisations abroad on our website.
Do you know of a Swiss club abroad that is celebrating an anniversary? Share it on our online platform SwissCommunity and discover Swiss clubs and Swiss Abroad in your area.