top of page
Manja Gideon

The goal firmly in sight: Manja Gideon, Founder
© Photography: Pierre Vicarini

Who we are

The Manja Gideon Foundation aims to fully inform patients and their families, interested persons, doctors and institutions about ovarian cancer and its symptoms. The non-profit foundation also supports efforts and projects geared towards research, preventive measures and treatment of the illness.

Manja Gideon was dedicated to shedding light on the shadowed public perception of ovarian cancer. Her hope in this was to spare other women from the disease that ultimately claimed her own life.

“I want to enable women to ask the right questions of doctors. If even a single life can be saved due to my foundation, I would be the happiest of women.”


Manja Gideon lost her battle with ovarian cancer on October 4, 2014, at the age of 59, after having battled ovarian cancer for five years. Not one of the many doctors she consulted in the first two years attributed her symptoms to ovarian carcinomas. This, in spite of suffering typical symptoms: bloating, stomach pain, diarrhea, constipation and nausea. Indeed, from a medical perspective, these symptoms are so broad that they could apply to diagnoses ranging from eating disorders to psychosomatic disorders.

What we do

Ovarian cancer is known to be a silent killer, despite the fact that recovery rates are good when the disease is detected early. However, for three out of four women, ovarian cancer is only diagnosed at an advanced stage due to the lack of an effective method for early detection. While colorectal cancer, skin cancer, cervical cancer, breast cancer and prostate cancer can be diagnosed at an early stage through preventive screening, ovarian cancer does not normally cause symptoms for an extended period of time.

The work of the Manja Gideon Foundation focuses to a large extent on projects that investigate the links between gene mutations and ovarian cancer. Women who have a BRCA1 gene mutation have a 50% higher risk of developing the disease, while BRCA2 gene mutation carriers have a 20% higher risk.

women on average develop ovarian cancer in Switzerland each year


women are under age 50 at the time of diagnosis

1 out of 5

of women with a BRCA1 gene mutation will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer


Our mission

There has been no effective awareness campaign to inform the public about ovarian cancer until now. The Manja Gideon Foundation aims to change that: by sharing information, by motivating patients and physicians to be open to inter-disciplinary thinking, and through improved screening methods and targeted preventive measures. In collaboration with Krebsliga Zürich, the foundation has developed and published a brochure presenting the facts and figures surrounding ovarian cancer. A series of lectures and startup funding for research projects are also in planning stages.

The projects we select for financial support are chosen in a careful and targeted process. Please submit your project in German and English by filling in our application form (please  use Microsoft Word).

Kunstinstallation von Robert Montgomery, Privatgarten Manja Gideon

Art installation by Robert Montgomery, in Manja Gideon’s private garden
© Photography: Mirjam Kluka

Leaving traces

“The people you love become ghosts inside of you and like this you keep them alive.” These words comprise a Robert Montgomery art installation in Manja Gideon’s garden. “This is the image that we want to offer guidance for us in the future. I want my daughter’s story to encourage other women to be aware of the signs their bodies give, and if they have persistent symptoms, to point out to their doctor the possibility of ovarian cancer,” says Erika Gideon, President of the Foundation Board.

Subscribe to our newsletter

Your donation brings us closer to our goal. You can support our work by making a contribution to our donations account: CH3300 206 2064 229 0201R, or by clicking on the button below.

bottom of page