Our Chalet Foundation
Many people who have visited Our Chalet in the past 3 – 4 years may have noticed the renovations and upgrading carried out in Our Chalet. Since 2011 an on-going project called ‘Fit for the Future’ has been carried out by Our Chalet Foundation and to date we have added the centre manager’s office in Spycher; upgraded the bathrooms and the T-bar in Our Chalet; fully renovated the kitchen and made improvements for the food and materials storage areas in the basement along with the laundry room of Our Chalet. All this work has been carried out to ensure that Our Chalet is kept to a high standard for guests and to ensure that the guests and staff can enjoy good facilities while staying at Our Chalet. The Fit for the Future project was made possible by the generous legacies left to Our Chalet Foundation by Irene von Graventiz and Ursula Schulthess. We have also been successful in receiving some grant aid from the Bernese Lottery towards this work.
So, what is Our Chalet Foundation? Our Chalet Foundation is the legal entity that looks after the management of the buildings and the land where Our Chalet is located. We work closely with the Centre Manager and WAGGGS. The Foundation was set up in September 1996 in accordance to Swiss law. The Board of Trustees of Our Chalet Foundation is made up of representatives from various groups including the World Board of WAGGGS, the European Committee of WAGGGS, Mouvement Scout de Suisse (PBS - the Swiss Guides & Scouts), the Foundation for Swiss Scout Houses and representatives appointed from other groups like Adelboden Tourism,the Adelboden Community and the World Foundation for Girl Guides and Girl Scout Inc. Members are appointed for a three year term and can serve a maximum of nine years. The Board of Trustees elects the chairman and the board has to have a Swiss majority. The Board of Trustees meet annually in March and the Executive Board meets by conference call 5 – 6 times during the year including one meeting at Our Chalet during summer / autumn. The Centre Manager is a member of this group. Our purpose is the management of the buildings and their surroundings belonging to the property of Our Chalet and thereby the preservation and development of the Girl Guides and Girl Scout International Centre, Our Chalet Adelboden. We want to ensure that Our Chalet and all the buildings will continue to serve girls and young women for many years to come, inspiring them to greatness and helping them to develop as responsible citizens of the world.
Along with the Fit for the Future project, Our Chalet Foundation carries out annual maintenance of the buildings and grounds which has included the re-varnishing of the floors of Our Chalet and Stöckli, re-fitting new window frames in Our Chalet to improve the glazing and cut down on heat-loss; fixing and strengthening the floor of the Goat shed after it collapsed and improving the space under the shed for outdoor equipment storage. During the November 2014 closure of Our Chalet, the wall and roof insulation throughout the main chalet was improved and new radiators and piping installed. The roadway up to Our Chalet has just been re-surfaced and a guide barrier installed on the bend below Spycher. Day to day maintenance is carried out by the Chalet staff, when larger pieces of work have to be undertaken it is discussed with the Executive Board and decisions are made as to when to carry out the work so that it will cause the least interference to the Chalet programme and guests. We are not involved in the running and management of the centre.
Over the past couple of years, Our Chalet Foundation has also been involved with the community re-zoning of the Adelboden area and the successful conclusion of this now allows us to do a small amount of building work on the site – this future work will include a garage for the cars and a garbage shelter - but there are no additional plans for extensions or new builds on the site. Future plans include the potential linking up the heating systems in Chalet, Stöckli and Spycher to make it more efficient and effective.
By continuing the upkeep of Our Chalet and surrounding buildings, Our Chalet Foundation also maintains the lasting legacy and vision of Helen Storrow (USA) who donated Our Chalet and Baby Chalet as an international centre for girls in 1932. Now over 80 years old and the oldest of the four world centres, everyone travelling and staying at Our Chalet has enjoyed the beautiful scenery of the mountains and all that the area of Adelboden offers and left with that spirit of guiding that is found “high up, high in the mountains”
For further details about Our Chalet Foundation, please contact Diane Dixon,
Board of Trustees of Our Chalet Foundation