Proximity, trust and partnership at eye level is what defines us

Who we are

Four decades in the service of people

The Rhein-Donau-Stiftung e.V. (RDS) was founded in Munich in 1977 as a private initiative to provide education for disadvantaged people in Germany and abroad. Today, the RDS accompanies more than 14 projects in various developing countries at its Cologne location with a dedicated team.

Focused on education

In the following years and especially from 1989, when the cooperation with the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the European Union started, RDS focused on educational projects to fight poverty in Central and South America, Africa and Southeast Asia.

Over 65,000 beneficiaries

The principle of helping people to help themselves and trusting cooperation with local partners continue to characterize our work. To date, we have been able to support around 65,000 people in more than 80 projects in over 20 different countries.

Founded in Munich

Rhein-Donau-Stiftung e.V. (RDS) was founded in Munich in 1973 as a private initiative to promote education in Germany and abroad.

Focused on education

In the years to come, and especially from 1986 onwards, when cooperation with the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the European Union began, the work of the association focused on the promotion of educational projects to combat poverty in developing countries.

35 years shaping our work

After 35 years and more than 75 successful projects worldwide, the principle of helping people to help themselves and the trusting cooperation with local partners continue to shape our work. Up until today we have realized X number of projects in Y different countries in the world.

How we work

Hand in hand with local people

An important principle of our work is that the projects start with the people who live locally. They know the conditions best and therefore know how social progress can succeed.

Long-term Cooperation

That is why we focus on long-term cooperation with our partner organizations, characterized by mutual trust.

As an equal project partner

Together with them, we develop the projects, ensure their financing and support them in their implementation.

Our Partners

How we finance our work

Your donation is multiplied by four!

The German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), with which we cooperate in the majority of our projects, finances 75% of the project costs. This means that four times your donation arrives on site.

Our Team

Joaquín García

CEO

Lena Sa Couto

Project Management

Sarah Kaminski

Sarah Kaminski

Project Management

Maren K. Monroy Kuhn

Public relations, fundraising

Ulrich Schütz

Accounting
Donation management

Our Board of Directors

RA Norbert Geis

(Aschaffenburg)

Public relations, fundraising

Dr. Hans Thomas

(Munich/Cologne)

Secretary General

Dr. Michael Winkler

(Munich)

Board Member

Dr. Werner Schmidt

(Munich)

Board Member

Dr. Alexander Hanke

(Basel)

Board Member

Ulrich Schütz

(Münster)

Board Member

Statutes and Documents

Work With Us

Currently we have no open positions.
Currently we have the following open positions:

Do you have any
questions?

The name “Rhein-Donau-Stiftung e.V.” refers both to the origin of the association with its two founding regions of Bavaria and the Rhineland and to its mission. For rivers have always been places of prosperity and culture. We support our partners in our project countries materially and ideally, so that they can develop a rich cultural and economic activity in their homeland.

Since its foundation, the association has had its own endowment capital. The interest generated from this is used to finance the association’s administrative costs.

The Rhein-Donau-Stiftung e.V. (RDS) was founded in 1977 by Dr. Hans Thomas, today Secretary General of the Association, with other friends to promote educational and development projects. The initial impetus came from the words and example of Blessed Bishop Álvaro del Portillo, Prelate of Opus Dei from 1975 to 1994, who encouraged members and friends of Opus Dei worldwide to establish social initiatives on their own responsibility for the benefit of the poor. In 1989, the BMZ co-financed for the first time an RDS project to promote the education of women in Medellin, Colombia.

The logo of the RDS takes up both rivers, the Rhine in green and the Danube in blue. The dots denote the fruits arising from the activities of RDS for the benefit of the people in our project countries.

The Rhein-Donau-Stiftung e.V. has been a bearer of the DZI donation seal since 2007. The DZI (German Central Institute for Social Issues) donation seal certifies that the Rhein-Donau-Stiftung e.V. uses donations economically and in accordance with its statutes and is a sign of carefully examined seriousness and worthiness of donations.
In addition, the association is committed to the standards of the Transparent Civil Society Initiative and the VENRO Code of Conduct. The Rhein-Donau-Stiftung e.V. is a member of the Association of German Development Non-Governmental Organizations (VENRO). (VENRO).