Modern Philanthropy

Modern Pestalozzi philanthropy takes many forms, including supporting education, improving the quality of education, and improving the social and economic status of the people of the communities where Pestalozzi villages are located

Modern philanthropy & Pestalozzi World

The most well-known version of the Pestalozzi system is the Pestalozzi children’s village model. Developed by Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi, the Pestalozzi system was a pedagogical philosophy that emphasized the importance of the relationship between teacher and student. The Pestalozzi system was also known for its emphasis on the importance of play in education. Each Pestalozzi village is an idyllic community of around thirty-five hundred people, located in a quiet rural setting.
Today, the Pestalozzi model is best known for its philanthropic efforts by the Pestalozzi children’s villages. For over a century, the Pestalozzi model has been used as a philanthropic tool by the Pestalozzi family. Today, the Pestalozzis continue to use their platform as a means to give back to society. The Pestalozzis have donated millions of dollars worth of equipment and supplies to various organizations, including schools, hospitals, and orphanages.
Over the years, the Pestalozzi system evolved into modern philanthropy. Today, philanthropists such as Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, and Mark Zuckerberg use their wealth and influence to help improve the lives of millions of people around the world. Some of the most common forms of philanthropy include nonprofit organizations, charitable foundations, and grants. Most philanthropists are also investors, which allows them to gain a return on their investments while also gaining access to the best opportunities in a given field.
Today, the Pestalozzi system is best known for its philanthropic endeavors. Modern Pestalozzi philanthropy takes many forms, including supporting education, improving the quality of education, and improving the social and economic status of the people of the communities where Pestalozzi villages are located. Many Pestalozzi villages also provide opportunities for their students to travel and learn from other schools, experts, and communities while they are still in school. Some Pestalozzi villages also build schools, provide scholarships, and provide training for teachers.
Over the years, the Pestalozzi system has been refined and adapted by modern philanthropists. Some of the most well-known modern philanthropists, such as Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffet, follow the Pestalozzi system, which emphasizes the importance of investing in education and providing a safe and well-cared-for environment for children to grow and learn. Bill and Melinda Gates, for example, have used their wealth to create a number of educational institutions, such as the Gates Foundation, which is the largest philanthropic organization in the world. The Gates Foundation focuses on education, disease prevention, and environmental issues.
The modern philanthropy of the twentieth century was a product of the Pestalozzi system. Modern philanthropy is the practice of philanthropy as a business endeavor, where the goal is not to improve the world, but to maximize returns on philanthropic investments. Modern philanthropous foundations such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Ford Foundation, and the Rockefeller Foundation operate like venture capital firms, investing in other philanthropic organizations and seeking to generate a return on their investments. The modern philanthropy of the twentieth century was a product of the Pestalozzi system.

A worldwide challenge

Schools are often inadequate or under-resourced.

Around 53% of children in low-and middle-income countries cannot read and understand a simple story by the end of primary school.

World Bank 2019a

Millions of children are forced to work to support their families.

Globally 63 million girls and 97 million boys were in child labour at the beginning of 2020.


Unicef and ILO 2020

Girls are often the first to lose their right to an education.

Globally, 1 in 5 women 20 to 24 years of age were married in childhood.


UN SDG Snapshot 2020

The Selection Process

Our teams in India, Zambia and Nepal travel to some of the most remote areas, where schools are poor and under-resourced.

Here, we work with the communities to select the brightest children at age ten, choosing at least two girls for each boy. We identify those who excel in the areas of emotional intelligence and academic performance. We choose these children for their potential to become role models and changemakers in their communities.

With the support and encouragement of their families, we offer these children the opportunity to join our programme and move to one of the Pestalozzi Villages.

Child-centred care at the
Pestalozzi Villages

At the Pestalozzi Villages, pupils aged 10-18 are supported in their journey to adulthood through our Head, Heart and Hands approach, by a community of experts, volunteers and former students.

They receive an excellent education at high quality local schools, live in a conducive environment for learning and receive additional academic support from staff and peers.

They live in a nurturing environment with child-centred care promoting their emotional wellbeing, motivating them to take care of others and inspiring their ambition.

Through volunteering locally in their communities they learn the value of giving back to those who are less fortunate.

They learn practical life skills. Children grow food and take pride in keeping their village clean and tidy. They learn crafts to develop skills they can use in future life.

The multi-cultural environment they live in teaches them to be respectful and inclusive.


When our children leave us at 18 they are fully equipped with a high quality education, exceptionally high grades, life skills and values to sustain them for their futures. They then go on to access university education, supporting themselves.

Our Alumni give back

Our monitoring demonstrates that our Alumni are becoming a new generation of teachers, health professionals, entrepreneurs, aid workers and leaders who are equipped with the tools they need to change the world, together.

We support our Alumni to stay connected with Pestalozzi World and each other even after graduation, and provide them with opportunities for mentoring, volunteering and career advice.

Our Alumni soon become role models in their communities, often actively trying to bring about social change, and true ambassadors for the Pestalozzi values and the new generation of change-makers.

Our Outreach Programme

Our teams are always looking for innovative ways to share the Pestalozzi values with more communities.

Edulution is one of the outreach programmes we support.

Edulution is a social enterprise partially funded by Pestalozzi World, running tablet-based educational programmes for children living in some of the most remote areas of Zambia, including refugee camps. Solar units entirely power the tablets.

Each year, thousands of children improve their reading, writing and math skills through Edulution.

Pestalozzi World supports 4300 children through our outreach programme each year.

The long term impact of your support:

As our students graduate and begin their careers, entire communities benefit from their support.


Pestalozzi World

60% of whom already hold a university or college qualification. Many more will soon graduate. 


Remain in their county of origin

88% of our Alumni have remained in their country of origin, contributing back to their communities. While 9% are studying overseas on scholarships.


Contributing back to their societies

by falling into at least one of these three categories: working in careers of public service, volunteering in community programmes, or supporting family.


Thank you for taking this step to donate. Please select from the following:

Gifts collected by our UK and USA charities can be directed to any of our international partners. Contact Suzanne Davis  to provide us with your preference.

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