$41 Billion Charity Pledge
2 July 2015 at 11:15 am
A Saudi Prince has made one of the biggest philanthropic pledges ever, vowing to give away his entire $41 billion fortune.
Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal, nephew of the late King of Saudi Arabia, Abdullah, announced that he would donate the massive sum to help build a “better world of tolerance, acceptance, equality and opportunity for all”.
Prince Alwaleed said he has modelled his donation on Bill Gates’ and Warren Buffett’s Giving Pledge, a move that was labelled an “admirable milestone” by Gates.
The money will be distributed by Alwaleed Philanthropies, the family’s trust, with the Prince declaring that it would be used to “build bridges to foster cultural understanding, develop communities, empower women, enable youth, provide vital disaster relief and create a more tolerant and accepting world”.
“It is a commitment without boundaries. A commitment to all humankind,” Prince Alwaleed said.
Prince Alwaleed has formed a board of trustees to oversee the gift, which will focus on finding impactful solutions to pressing issues, “without regard to gender, race or religious affiliation”.
He also indicated that the money would be distributed over a lengthy period of time.
“This donation will be allocated according to a well-devised plan throughout the coming years,” he said.
“It will be based on a strategy that is supervised and managed by a board of trustees headed by me to ensure that it will be used after my death for humanitarian projects and initiatives.”
Prince Alwaleed said he was motivated to make the massive gift after working with other philanthropists for more than 35 years.
“You may rightly wonder, why am I doing this? My response is that everyone goes through certain life-changing situations that have a great effect on his or her crucial future decisions. I have had the opportunity to witness, first hand, the challenging conditions of many communities across the globe, and have stood among those who were suffering and in great need. I have also learned of overwhelming obstacles through meetings with the leaders of countries and communities around the world,” he said.
“Given the world’s current economic and social conditions, and the devastating effects of war and natural disasters around the world, more collaborative efforts are required from all capable individuals to unify their stand in the effort to alleviate poverty in the most deprived communities and to advance and build their societies.
“Philanthropy is a personal responsibility, which I embarked upon more than three decades ago and is an intrinsic part of my Islamic faith. With this pledge, I am honoring my life-long commitment to what matters most – helping to build a more peaceful, equitable and sustainable world for generations to come.”
Bill Gates commended Prince Alwaleed, saying he was an inspiration to other philanthropists.
“Prince Alwaleed’s generous commitment promises to significantly extend the great work that his foundation is already doing. His gift is an inspiration to all of us working in philanthropy around the world,” Gates said.