The Giving Pledge is a unique philanthropic pursuit, in that it assembles billionaires from across the world, to encourage and challenge them to donate to a variety of charitable organizations. Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates made the Pledge public four years ago. Since then, the group has grown, attracting one hundred and twenty seven billionaires who are willing to donate at least half of their wealth, according to an article recently completed by The Christian Post.
The article specifies the requirements to join the pledge group. Individuals who wish to participate must be worth at least one billion dollars; pledges must be willing to part with at least half of those funds to charitable pursuits. The group of billionaires currently participating is varied in their careers and their choice in charities. Those serving in the Giving Pledge range from twenty-seven to ninety eight years old.
Warren Buffett, who is considered one of the most successful investors of the twentieth century and is consistently ranked among the world’s wealthiest people, has pledged to give away ninety nine percent of his wealth to charities. The bulk of his contributions have gone towards the Gates Foundation, where the funds are used to reduce global poverty and disease. Gates himself isn’t shy in sharing his funds; the Gates committee has agreed to give away ninety five percent of their wealth to philanthropic pursuits. Jeffrey Skoll, the first employee and president of eBay, was among one of the first billionaires to sign up to participate in the Giving Pledge. He has created his own foundation, which works to fight global threats, such as climate change and tackling the Middle East conflict.
The article details that seven of the participating billionaires recently sat down with 60 Minutes. The charities that were discussed were as varied as their sponsoring billionaire; topics at hand included unemployment in South Africa, brain cancer detection and treatment, tax reform in California, helping woman in the pursuit of equality and many more. Continually, these billionaires—along with all others serving the Giving Pledge—impress the general public, as they are among the rich and the charitable.
For more on Philanthropic News, visit Eugene Chrinian’s SlideShare, and follow Eugene on Twitter: @eugenechrinian.