George Soros, the world-renowned philanthropist, gave $18 billion to The Open Society Foundations, an organization that promotes good governance worldwide. The donation, which is proof of George Soros’ commitment to human rights, occurred in June 2017. So far,
Soros’ contributions to charities amount to $32bn.
The Open Society Foundations, with outposts in over 100 countries, helps to support human rights, combat authoritarianism, and the welfare of marginalized groups, the LGBT community, minorities, and refugees. Open Society, says its spokesperson Laura Silber, aims at promoting liberal and vibrant democracies globally. Since 1979, Open Society, the third largest charitable organization in the world, with only the Wellcome Trust and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and ahead, has spent approximately $14 billion in pro-democracy activities.
Who is George Soros?
George Soros is a Hungarian-born philanthropist and investor. Born in 1930, Soros endured the Nazi occupation and atrocities in Hungary of 1944–1945 as well as the massacre of about half a million Hungarian Jews. Soros’ family escaped the mass murders by falsifying identity papers to conceal their background. In 1947, Soros migrated from Budapest to London to work as a part-time railway porter and a night-club waiter. He also enrolled at the London School of Economics. After he relocated to the United States in 1956, Soros immediately entered into investments. The financial breakthrough for George Soros came in 1992 when he got $1 billion in a bet against the British currency.
The Open Society Foundations
In 1970, George Soros founded the Soros Fund Management and used it as the avenue to become a successful investor in the United States. Using his vast financial fortunes and the philosophy and ideologies of Karl Popper, which he first heard at the London School of Economics, Soros started the Open Society Foundations. According to Karl Popper, respect for freedom of expression, democratic principles, and individual rights are the only ingredients that allow societies to progress.
Under the leadership of Soros, the Open Society Foundations supports individuals and groups across the globe to promote accountable governments, independent media, justice, and equality. Open Society also provides fees for thousands of students in schools and universities. Sex workers, immigrants, and drug users benefit from the support of Open Society too.
George Soros-A Lifetime Commitment to Just Societies
Soros who is 87 years intends to give away much of his finances to the Open Society Foundations as per the information from Laura Silber. In apartheid South Africa, Soros supported black South Africans by giving scholarships in 1979. From the 1980s, the Open Society encouraged more openness in Communist Hungary. Hungarians received funding for educational visits to the Western countries and independent cultural organizations. Further, Soros pioneered the Central European University to promote critical thinking in the crumbling Communist bloc.
In the 2000s, George Soros began to support same-sex marriages vocally. At the global arena, independent organizations including the International Crisis Group, Global Witness, the Institute for New Economic Thinking, and the European Council on Foreign Relations are some of the beneficiaries of George Soros’s philanthropy.
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