Billionaire philanthropist and hedge fund manager George Soros has recently given one the largest personal donations ever to a charitable foundation. He has transferred $18 billion to his Open Society Foundations (OSF), making it the third largest foundation in the world. The foundation currently ranks behind the Bill And Melinda Gates Foundation and the Wellcome Trust.
This donation brings Soros’s lifetime charitable donations to over $32 billion. It also reduces his personal wealth to just over $23 billion, according to estimates. Soros started the Open Society Foundations in 1979 and during its lifetime it has given away more than $14 billion. The sole purpose of OSF is to “build vibrant and tolerant democracies” across the globe.
Soros and OFS have recently turned their attention to the United States. They see the rise of White Nationalism and the election of Donald Trump as threats to American Democracy. OFS has invested in efforts to protect the LGBT community and to help decrease the number of police brutality incidents. It is no secret the George Soros has been one of the biggest donors to the Democratic party in America. During the last presidential election, Soros pledged more than $26 million to Super PACs that supported Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.
The Open Society Foundations is not just involved in political matters. During the Ebola outbreak in 2014 the foundation funded treatment centers. It also gave funding for a Roma arts and culture center. After the 2016 presidential election, the foundation made efforts to protect citizens from what it called “a national wave of hate incidents.” Soros himself has a unique perspective on human rights. He was born in Hungary and lived through the Nazi invasion of his country and then through the Soviet occupation. His family fled Hungary and Soros ended up in London as a refugee.
He attended the London School of Economics and began his business career there. He made his fortune by betting against the British Pound in 1992. Since then Soros has become one of the most well-known philanthropists in the world. He has continually pressed for transparent and accountable governments around the world. He has used large portion of his personal fortune to promote human rights and democracy across the globe.
In the past, George Soros had funded OSF with annual gifts of $800 -900 million, but over the last few years, those donations increased dramatically. It is expected that he will give OSF $2 billion over the next few years.
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