How I Was Inspired By Warren Buffett And Bill Gates To Give Money To Charity

August 18, 2010 § Leave a comment

This summer has been an interesting one for me. Not only have I spent a lot of time growing my companies, I’ve also started becoming a philanthropist. Today I’m going to talk about two charities I recently gave money to, but first I want to tell you how I got inspired.

Back in June Buffett and Gates held a joint news conference where they announced the Giving Pledge.

The idea behind the Giving Pledge is that billionaires have more money then they or their next 10 generations could possibly spend. So, they asked fellow billionaires to pledge to give away half of their wealth to charitable organizations in their lifetime.

Now, I’m not a billionaire, but I have become very successful and watching that press conference made me realized that to really live up to my own ethical standards I should start giving away some of my wealth as well.

Since then I’ve given money both personally and through my companies to more than a dozen organizations. Today, I’d like to talk about two that I’ve given $1,000 each to this week – the YESS Foundation and Big Brothers/Big Sisters Of Canada.

The YESS Foundation is a great organization that solves a problem facing impoverished youth in Canada. The deal is that at-risk young people can access government money and services until they turn 16. Once they turn 18 they can get access to the adult welfare system.

But, in between they don’t have access to any assistance at all – and that’s not fair. So, the YESS Foundation picks up the slack and provides financial and other assistance to 16 and 17 year olds who need it.

Big Brothers/Big Sisters Of Canada should need no explanation. For decades they have matched successful men and women as role models with at-risk youth who need a positive adult figure in their lives. Their results have been astounding.

I am proud to support both of these charities, will continue to do so in the future and encourage other successful people to follow in my path.

Face it, a lot of us have more money than we can reasonably spend – let’s use some of it to make the world a better place.

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