The next time you purchase a quality timepiece, you may be helping to control the next ebola outbreak or funding the care of a wounded child in a war zone. Nomos Glashütte’s line of limited-edition watches benefit the humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders. For each watch sold, the company donates 100 euros, or 100 pounds, depending on location. Consistent with other Nomos watches, the price of the line is roughly between $1,700 and $2,200.
Founded in 1990 by Roland Schwertner in the small town of Glashütte in eastern Germany, Nomos watch designs are influenced by modernist Bauhaus styles of the early 20th century. The company has received numerous, significant industry awards, including the 2017 German Brand Award in the luxury category.
The DWB line, composed of prize-winning watches, is distinctive for a red “12” and small inscription on the face. Nomos began the campaign in 2013, with the release of two classic mechanical watches — the Tangente 33 and Tangente 38 — in a special edition of 1,000 each. The line since has expanded to feature eight watches. The company produces about 20,000 watches annually, divided into 12 models.
“Every look at your watch will also remind you of the people around the world in need of help,” noted Uwe Ahrendt, Nomos chief executive officer.
Doctors Without Borders, also called Médecins Sans Frontieres, is a nongovernmental organization that provides health care and emergency medical services to people in some of the world’s most dangerous places.
The Geneva-based NGO was founded in 1971 by more than a dozen French physicians and journalists with the goal of providing medical care internationally to those in the greatest need. The group’s formation was spurred by the difficulties responding to the humanitarian crisis in the Biafra region in Nigeria, which was blockaded during that nation’s civil war from 1967 to 1970.
Volunteers representing DWB have worked in world hot spots, including Sudan, Rwanda, Kosovo, Libya and Burma. The organization was awarded the 1999 Nobel Peace Prize for its efforts.
“Humanitarian action is more than simple generosity,” said Dr. James Obrinski, then the DWB International Council president, during his Nobel acceptance speech in Oslo, Norway. “More than offering material assistance, we aim to enable individuals to regain their rights and dignity as human beings.”