ISLAMABAD: Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) Head Dr Stefanie Burri on Sunday said he agency is annually spending more than $2 million for the betterment of Pakistanis. She expressed these views during an interview with Daily Times. Dr Burri said SDC is providing humanitarian assistance in Pakistan since 1966. The SDC has concentrated its efforts on Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) as these areas are facing poverty, illiteracy, less development and natural disasters. The programme for these areas was started with the aim to improve the quality of life of the people there. “We have good relations and cooperation with the government of Pakistan. SDC’s long-term commitment in Pakistan has the goals of reducing poverty, fighting discrimination, supporting disadvantaged population groups. The empowering people through better governance, conflict resolution at local level and protecting the rights of vulnerable groups are also the priority for SDC,” she added. She said SDC is working in collaboration with UNHCR for refugees and temporary displaced persons (TDPs) as well as their rehabilitation. She said helping the homeless women and children is the main concern for SDC. She said that her agency also grants 12 scholarships to Pakistani students every year for post-graduation programmes in Swiss universities. Dr Burri said that a very few people outside Pakistan know positive things about the country. She said Pakistan can create its soft image by introducing its rich heritage, culture, beautiful landscapes and poetry. To a question, she said that her favourite city in the world is Swiss capital Bern. She also said she likes Lahore due to its heritage. She told Daily Times that her favourite novel is Hermann Hesse’s Siddhartha. “I am serving in Pakistan since February, 2016. Some of my friends were saying that Pakistan was a dangerous and difficult county, but I feel that I did not face any problem during my 10 months stay here. I have visited KP, FATA, Karachi and Lahore. Pakistan is an interesting and beautiful country with rich heritage and culture, where people are hospitable. I am very happy that SDC projects are getting support of the government. I like to do more in extending help to the people here,” she concluded.