Member of Boards of Directors – Institutional Communications Consultant

Disconnect … to reconnect !

In the company of Frédéric Lenoir in the Wadi Rum Desert at the foot of the Resilience tree

  « Isn’t life the inaugural gift ? »

Paul Ricoeur

Friends of yesterday, today or tomorrow,

I have been carried along these last few months by beautiful and enriching encounters,  with a particularly busy agenda full of exciting new projects… and especially by a life experience that I am happy to share with you here.

It was a joy to spend a week last April in the Jordanian desert of Wadi Rum with Frédéric Lenoir … a real initiatory journey “On the Way of Wisdom” in this breathtakingly beautiful desert, and just as much an inner journey of self discovery!

The philosophical approach of Frederic, whose main references are Jung and Spinoza, his reflections on desire, as well as his spiritual openness in the broadest sense of the term, were true gifts.

It is a real “change” that took place on the mental and emotional as well as spiritual levels, of which I can testify, and whose effects I measure as time goes by…

This journey has allowed me to “close the loops” of the many bereavements that have marked my life and to fully relive the different stages that have allowed me to build myself in joy as well as in suffering to as a woman… the Lover, the Mother, the Grandmother, the Friend, the Philanthropist and the Businesswoman that I am today.


We become who we are … this is the ultimate goal of this often arduous learning process that is simply “the act of living”.

Wouldn’t Life be just a short earthly incarnation of an eternal soul, which comes from somewhere else, before continuing its trajectory in the afterlife when this journey comes to an end?

Wouldn’t “the act of living”, or “the art of living”, be…

… this distance to things which allows to apprehend space-time with a new look and a universal unit of measurement, which anchors in the “here and now” and which relativizes all things in the light of eternity.

… self-knowledge,

… listening to “needs” and not “wants”,

… working on deep desires,

… the alignment of “Human Doing” with “Human Being” – and not the other way around! –

So many ways to grow and become the best version of yourself!

I would like to outline here some of the projects and highlights that have marked these past six months … my next Newsletter in September will complete the picture.

They are in fact my personal chessboard … these new contributors that I have added resonate in synergy with all those who are already there. I almost feel like comparing myself to a symphony orchestra conductor writing the score that will allow all of them to contribute to the general harmony, as well as to play their individual part.


The UNHCR, or more precisely the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees,
with which I had been in contact for several years, asked me last December to participate in an investigation based on interviews with 20 women philanthropists selected by them at the global level.

These exchanges focused on my vision and perception of their strategy and their work, both here in Switzerland at the headquarters of this organization, and in the field internationally.

I would like to underline the remarkable work led by my friend Stephanie Simpson, who sent me a moving handwritten letter whilst in the middle of the Ukrainian crisis.



The connections I had with them have strengthened and intensified since then… the war in Ukraine, if it has focused the attention of the world’s media on the tragedy of these “European” refugees – thus closer to us – has also emphasized the human drama of unprecedented proportions of refugees on our planet, forced into exile as much because of climate change as because of the political instability of so many regimes that practice “ethnic cleansing”, and because of the fratricidal wars that are becoming more and more numerous in the world.

I am attaching a recent presentation “Operational Strategy for Climate Resilience and Environmental Sustainability 2022-2025” which demonstrates the global and holistic “people-environment” approach they are taking in their current projects.


We can all participate in these solidarity efforts for migrants, either there or here!

The IFPD Foundation has set up a friendly program for the social and professional integration of migrants who have arrived in French-speaking Switzerland in recent years, enabling micro-enterprises in the food sector.

AlterStart Food is a rainbow of tasty and professionally prepared world cuisine, delivered to your home!

AlterStart is an example of a beautiful collaboration between the public – social services of the cities of Lausanne and Geneva – and the private sector. AlterStart is delighted to be able to deliver home-made delicacies to you… a wonderful and useful way to help while also enjoying yourself!

More information on the website, highlighting the social entrepreneurship projects and the many other actions carried out by this Foundation in India, Nepal and Brazil in particular.


alter start
Click to read the presentation of Alter Start Food


Click for the Results of Alter Start Food Genève

Concerning Ukraine, and effective and traceable aid on the spot for the victims of this bloody conflict, I am happy to present you the project carried out by my young friend Marc Dufey, owner of a small transport company.

Since the beginning of the Russian invasion, Marc has committed himself to transporting medical equipment and food products from Switzerland to Ukraine with one of his trucks, taking the additional risk of personally assuming the risks of accidents for himself and his vehicle, since no insurance company accepts to cover him from the moment he enters the war zone.

Our family holding company JBF has decided to finance several trips of medical equipment donated by the hospitals of Valais, Vaud and Geneva that Marc will transport in the coming weeks between Switzerland and Lviv where the local hospital has been completely destroyed.

Marc needs you to continue his mission!


Sur l’Etraz 3 – 1608 Oron-le-Châtel
Raiffeisen Schweiz Genossenschaft
CH66 8080 8006 0056 2946 5


Those of you who have followed me over the years know my commitment to everything related to human rights, discrimination and disability, whether physical or mental.

I am particularly close to Special Olympics, a worldwide movement of national and international competitions and inclusive sports activities for people with intellectual disabilities. Special Olympics was founded in the 1960s by one of President JFK’s many siblings for one of their mentally disabled sisters. This global movement has since grown and expanded to many countries around the world, all of whose National Foundations are affiliated with the U.S. parent Foundation.

Representing the Board of the Special Olympics Switzerland Foundation (SOSWI), I had the pleasure of attending the Opening Ceremony of the SOSWI Summer Games last June in St.Gallen along with hundreds of athletes from all over Switzerland. Our Swiss Foundation was privileged to welcome our multi-medalist athlete Simon Ammann as Chairman of the Board and looks forward to Simon’s bright and caring presence to carry the Special Olympics message of hope and inclusion higher and farther, just like his ski jumping.

Last but not least, let’s talk about Culture!

Culture is what must never cease to live, and to make live, in the darkest moments of the history of our societies… what an invader will try to destroy to find himself in definitively conquered ground, it is precisely the places of worship and memory, the places which refer to the history and to the roots of a people! 

Indeed, it was at the beginning of the war in Ukraine, in mid-March, that the small and moving ceremony for the creation of the Circle of Friends of the Chaplin Museum took place in the living room of the family manor above Vevey.

It was an emotional moment around Eugene, President of the Circle, who recalled some of his family memories to the few “Founding Friends of the Circle” who were present.

Moment of gratitude also to be associated with the valorization and the radiation of the Chaplin values of humanity and benevolence that this Circle, of which I took the Vice Presidency, has for mission to root through social and cultural activities.

In particular by going outside the walls of the Manor to hospitals and to the most fragile and precarious places among us.

Isn’t this what the great Charlie would have wanted?

The great Charlie whose immense film The Great Dictator is more relevant than ever?

Our very young Circle needs you to accomplish its mission, you will find enclosed the different membership forms  .

Your donation will allow us to develop actions in favour of people in difficult situations, to sensitise young audiences to the humanist values associated with Charlie Chaplin, or to contribute to the work of emerging artists whose work and philosophy echo these values.

Cliquez pour accéder au dépliant.


The Exhibition of this year 2022 is dedicated to the wonderful masterpiece
The Kid …. There is still time to go and see it and immerse yourself in the magical and poetic world of Chaplin’s World!

The “for profit” and the “not for profit” often converge, when the human beings who are the initiators are aligned on the same ethics and share similar values.
As President of the Board of Directors of Coninco, I am proud to relay here the “Launch of the Environmental Innovation Awards Competition” launched by ONE CREATION, the Cooperative created by Olivier Ferrari in 2010!
Notice to amateurs and innovators, do not hesitate to try your luck, and in any case to support this excellent initiative!


The purpose of the Environmental Innovation Awards is to promote the goals and values of ONE CREATION as an investor by supporting young companies in the early stages of their existence and to integrate them into a community.


Deadline for applications : August 31st 2022

ONE CREATION is a B-Corp certified cooperative company created in June  2010 to support the development of environmental  technologies through its investment portfolio. This  commitment meets the conjunction of social, economic and  environmental needs.



These are the few thoughts I wanted to share with you at the beginning of summer, the time of year when the days stretch out and time, for the vast majority of us, suspends its flight, the opportunity for many to realign the inner compass and redefine a new roadmap!

Breaks are like sleep: you need to take them regularly to benefit.

Read this article published in IDEAS.TED.COM!

The secrets to a truly restorative vacation” focuses on the vital benefits of a true and regenerative break to recharge the batteries.

The short interview with behavioral scientist Ashley Whillans gives some useful tools for disconnecting.


4 secrets to a truly restorative vacation
Feeling burned out? Here’s research-backed advice for what you need to do on your holiday break (and how long you should do it for). 
Read more »

After my “body and soul” immersion of a few days last spring in the Wadi Rum Desert, – without any means of communication -, I can personally testify to the powerful impact of being totally offline to be able to fully reconnect to oneself, to others and to the World!

« Isn’t life the inaugural gift ?  »

Paul Ricoeur             

See you in the fall for my next News! Wishing you A bright summer of disconnection – reconnection to all!


Dominique Brustlein-Bobst

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