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Who is Pestalozzi?

Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi, was a Swiss social reformer and educator, also known as the Father of Modern Education. His ideas led to the great educational reforms in Europe in the 19th century.

Creating social change through education


Pestalozzi was born on January 12, 1746, in Zürich, Switzerland.

All his life,  Pestalozzi wanted to help the poor. He had been poor himself most of his youth and had observed orphans who gained apprenticeships as farmers only to be overworked and underfed.

He dreamt of a world where comprehensive education would be offered to all people, and theorised the idea of 'learning by head, hand and heart'.

His teachings would lead to the great educational reforms in the 19th century. He believed it was the duty of society to enable every individual human being to learn, and that education is a fundamental right of every person.


As his ideas spread across Europe, education became available for everyone, and pedagogy became a widely accepted discipline.

The Pestalozzi Village

What's a Pestalozzi Village?

The first Pestalozzi Children’s Village (Kinderdorf Pestalozzi in German) was established in Trogen, Switzerland, in 1946, after the Second World War, to accommodate and educate children from both sides of the war.

The concept soon spread to other countries and various organisations around the world. 


In 1995, PestalozziWorld was born and today runs three Pestalozzi Villages where exceptional children from an extremely underprivileged background, are given the opportunity to get the tools they need to become future change-makers:

At the Pestalozzi Villages...

... students aged 10-18 are supported in their journey to adulthood through our Head, Heart and Hands approach, by a community of experts, volunteers and former students. 

At the Villages, our students:


  • Receive clothing, food and support, and the chance to attend high-quality local schools.

  • Have the opportunity to live in a caring environment, where their emotional and physical wellbeing is nurtured (child-centred care).

  • Learn about tolerance and inclusion by living in a multi-cultural environment.

  • Are required to volunteer locally and develop their skills beyond the classroom.


At the end of secondary education, the children graduate from the programme well prepared to access further education and with the knowledge, skills and motivation to care for themselves and others.

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of our Alumni are in careers of public service, such as teaching or healthcare, have volunteered to help their communities, or support their families financially. Many others are contributing back to society through entrepreneurial and business activities.

Our Impact
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