History

FOUNDER’S STORY

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In 1986, Albina du Boisrouvray’s only child — François-Xavier Bagnoud, a search and rescue pilot — was killed in a tragic helicopter crash in Mali at the age 24. Albina walked away from her successful career as a film producer to champion the cause of tens of millions of vulnerable women and children worldwide driven into poverty in the wake of the AIDS pandemic. When she founded FXB Foundation and FXB International in 1989, Albina’s vision for the organization was to pursue, in the field of development, the values of generosity and compassion that guided her son’s life. To fund the work, she sold three quarters of what she owned, which included jewelry, art, real estate business, and even her film production company. She used the funds she raised to start FXB.

Our History

1989

Albina du Boisrouvray forms FXB in honor of her son François-Xavier Bagnoud, a helicopter search-and-rescue pilot.

1991

Albina pioneers the holistic FXBVillage Model, foregoing the conventional use of micro-credit by providing grants for Income Generating Activities for the ultra poor.

1992

FXB founds the FXB Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard University.

2002

Albina is awarded the North-South Prize from the Council of Europe with the President of East Timor for defense of the rights of the individual and partnership between the North and South.

2007

Research shows that 86% of FXBVillage families remain self-sufficient four years after the program’s end.

2008

UNAIDS recognizes the FXBVillage Model as a best practice for supporting AIDS-affected families. UNICEF identifies the FXBVillage Model as a strong example of a community-based program for vulnerable families.

2014

OPHI at the University of Oxford finds that FXBVillage participants are multidimensionally less poor than their peers three years after the program’s completion.

2015

FXB shares the holistic FXBVillage Model via an online, open-source toolkit in collaboration with Harvard University.

FXB Foundation

The FXB Foundation invested in many of the things that fascinated François-Xavier and inspired his life: a love of the Valais and the Alpine region where he worked, a fascination with flight and space, his academic studies and the promotion of human rights and public health around the world.

FXB Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard

Harvard FXB Center LogoThe creation of FXB’s Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard is a result of a visionary partnership between Albina du Boisrouvray and Dr. Jonathan Mann. In 1993, the FXB Foundation donated $20 million, one of the largest donations ever made to the Harvard School of Public Health, to establish the construction of the seven-story François-Xavier Bagnoud Building on Huntington Avenue, and also to establish the François-Xavier Bagnoud Professorship in Health and Human Rights. The FXB Center for Health and Human Rights is the leading international center for education and scholarship on health and human rights. The FXB Center’s faculty operates at both the national and international levels through collaboration and partnerships with health and human rights practitioners, governmental and non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, and international agencies.

Aerospace Engineering Department at the University of Michigan

Aerospace Engineering Department at the University of Michigan Logo

The FXB Foundation sponsored various programs and initiatives run by the Aerospace Engineering Department at the University of Michigan where François-Xavier graduated with honors as an engineer and published a reference manual, “Theory of the helicopter for the private pilots”.

The Wave Field, a memorial to François-Xavier Bagnoud, is truly an artistic treasure of the North Campus at the University of Michigan. The Wave Field is an earthen sculpture on the Southeast side of the François-Xavier Bagnoud (FXB) Building. It was designed and created by Maya Lin, an artist well known for creating the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington DC along with the Civil Rights Memorial in Montgomery Alabama.

Since 1991, the Foundation has also been financing FXB grants for students of the second and third cycle of aeronautics studies. In 1998, the Foundation also funded the FXB Chair of aeronautics program in engineering for vertical flights. From 1992 to 1999, the FXB Aerospace Prize, created to honor the memory and ideals of its homonym and also to recognize contributions and progress made within the humanitarian field, was awarded every two years for the most significant contributions in these areas.

Learn more about the Department of Aerospace Engineering at the University of Michigan.

François-Xavier Bagnoud Chair in Pediatric Allergy, Rutgers

François-Xavier Bagnoud Chair in Pediatric Allergy, Rutgers

In 1990, Albina du Boisrouvray provided generous funding to enhance the local clinical program to treat pediatric HIV and to expand the expertise to the rapidly growing HIV pandemic. In recognition of this generous award, the Center was named the François-Xavier Bagnoud (FXB) Center in memory of her son and began the International Training Program (ITP), one of the first international training programs for healthcare providers caring for pregnant women with HIV infection and perinatally-infected infants and children worldwide. The FXB Foundation also launched the FXB endowed chair in Pediatric Allergy and Infectious Diseases awarded to James Oleske, MD. In 1996 a second endowed chair in Community Pediatric Nursing was created. Felesia Bowen, PhD, APN is the current recipient of this award.

From 1990–2000, this program developed customized education and training for more than 200 healthcare providers from 37 countries. The FXB Center teams also conducted in-country provider training and collaborated with in-country trainers to develop and implement curricula and support systems of care for HIV in 18 countries. Since the beginning of the HIV epidemic the FXB Center team contributed to every major development in pediatric and perinatal HIV including the landmark PACTG 076 protocol for PMTCT; the first antiretroviral treatment guidelines for children; the first international pediatric HIV training program, and the first of its kind website dedicated to collecting, reviewing and sharing state-of-the-art pediatric HIV information with providers and consumers.

The transition that occurred in 1997, when United Hospital was closed and FXB Center moved to UMDNJ, led to the establishment of FXB Center as a Center of the School of Nursing. In July 2013, the FXB Center, which is operating without financial support from FXB, was incorporated with Rutgers School of Nursing, the State University of New Jersey.