Our motto is not to look away, but to take a very close look wherever we perceive social, socio-cultural or environmental discrimination. We want to make an active contribution to more justice and equality of opportunities for all people, no matter where they were born.

Our guideline is to help people to help themselves.


SONNE-International advocates a world where everybody has access to clean water, food, medical care, education and work. It is our goal to improve the living conditions of disadvantaged people by means of holistic, sustainable support programmes and to enable them to live their lives with dignity.


We are particularly concerned with children, adolescents and young women with regard to their individual climatic, geographic and cultural problems. They are part of a complex social system, and by supporting and educating them we will strengthen their families and – in the long run – exert a positive influence on the development of society as a whole.

What we do

SONNE-International is an internationally operative Austrian development Organisation that was founded in 2002 by Chairman Mag. Erfried Malle and the Styrian physician Dr. Susanne Prügger. We champion education and training, as this is the basis for a life in dignity, and we contribute to a decrease in poverty, to food security and health care.  The main beneficiaries of our projects are children and adolescents, women and underprivileged population groups in Bangladesh, Ethiopia, India and Myanmar.


SONNE-International’s  support programmes are designed to enable disadvantaged persons to live independently and with dignity. As a principle, we do not resort to one-time measures (except in extreme emergencies), but offer long-term, sustainable support.

By planning and executing all our projects in close cooperation with well-established, trustworty local partners and by providing them with systematic professional training whenever necessary, we want to strengthen the local structures and to increase their sense of ownership.

Sectors of our development cooperation

  • Education

    we support  vulnerable or marginalized children or adolescents by giving them access to basic education (informal and alternative schooling), to primary, secondary and high school, and eventually to university.

  • Health

    basic health care
    women’s and reproductive health
    food security
    awareness (hygiene, health, genital mutilation)
    advancement of women and promotion of democracy
    sports programmes
    psycho-social care

  • Skills training and income-generating projects

    tailoring, computer training, individual skills training, Internet café, teacher training, training for health professionals etc.

  • Rural development

    water supply / sanitation (e.g. wells, toilets, watering places)
    agricultural projects  (cultivation of agricultural products, animal husbandry)

  • Disaster relief

    prevention of catastrophies and rehabilitation of disaster victims

Programmatic approach

Before moving into a new project area, we from SONNE-International set up an action plan. We take a very close look at the situation  and define exactly how we can improve the living conditons of the local population in a sustainable manner. Often it is not sufficient to give people access to basic education, skills training or health care – in order to improve their situation substantially, an integrated approach is needed. It is our aim to support our beneficiaries until they can generate income for themselves and consequently organize their lives independently.


Participatory, cooperative approach

All our projects in the respective countries are planned and executed in close cooperation with local partners who are well-established and have the necessary project management know-how.

We choose, conceive and implement the projects together with our local partners in a participatory manner. The partners are responsible for conducting the project on site, for writing regular reports, for administering the finances and for carrying out annual audit reports. SONNE-International provides the financial means, administers, controls and evaluates the projects and keeps contact with the funding bodies and with major as well as small donors.

We put particular emphasis on gender equality when conceiving our projects as well as with regard to their execution, administration and management.

By leaving  the execution of the projects in the hands of our local partners and by providing them with systematic professional training whenever necessary, we want to strengthen their structures and to increase their competence and their sense of ownership.

As we are convinced that our local partners have the necessary know-how for implementing the projects, we refrain from deploying long-term development aid workers or expatriates.

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