Frank Mulroy stared at the television. Sally Augustine was in the news again. This time around, she was making a donation towards the construction of August University. Sally was a wealthy multi-billionaire who inherited millions of dollars from her father. Her father was one of the world’s famous architect. She wanted to make a name for herself, so she had invested the money into the oil and gas industry. Now, she was one of the richest people in the country. She didn’t stop there, however. She made sure she donated to charities. She gave gifts to foundations. She made out checks to research centers. Her altruism was known all over the country.
Frank thought back to the discussion he had with his friends about philanthropists. Some of them were of the opinion that she was showing off. Some felt she did have a genuine desire to help people. The most important question of Frank’s mind was: why should the rich be philanthropic? Was there a burden on them to help people? What was in it for them? He raised the question with his friends, and a few of them came up with answers. Here are some reasons:
- Giving Helps the Rich be Part of the Community: As a wealthy person in the society, you will face a lot of trials. People will talk about you and question your wealth. There will be a lot of rumors about you. If you refuse to help the individuals in the society, there might be a lot of hate directed towards you. However, when you are philanthropic, your name will be forever remembered. The individuals in the community will know you do not deny where you come from or your heritage.
- Giving Will Set an Example in the Society: The truth is children watch what their parents do. If you are a wealthy person with kids, you need to set an example. That is what would mold them into what they will turn out to be in the future. Now, if you teach them the essence of giving, they will follow suit. You should teach them that being rich should not be about spending money on material belongings. Improving the lives of others is far more beneficial than any of those things.
3 Benefits of Being Philanthropic
Are you thinking about being philanthropic? Are you thinking of sending this article to someone? Whatever you reason for wanting to know about being philanthropic, here are some benefits of giving you should be aware:
- Reduced Stress Rate: When you donate or give something to someone, your stress rate lessens. We didn’t just make this up. Researchers at the John Hopkins University carried out studies by using many people to test their theory. The conclusion they arrived at was that those that continually donated had lower stress levels than those that didn’t.
- Leave Behind a Good Legacy: Who does not want their name etched in people’s heart? If you are giving donations and helping people, there is no way they will not remember you. Many people have philanthropists to thank for their success. For instance, those that had the opportunity to receive a good formal education because of the donation made by a philanthropist in their community will forever remember that donor.
- Tax Burden Reduction: In the United States, giving to a charitable organization can reduce your tax burden at the end of the year. When you’re listing your tax returns, you can report the dollars you have contributed, and the amount automatically gets taken off your tax. Also, you can donate clothes, food, and cars to people in the community. Later, you can list the items and claim the cash value of it.
Top 4 World Philanthropists
As said earlier, many rich people are philanthropists. Philanthropists are not just peculiar to the United States. They are all over the world. Are you interested in knowing them? Really? Okay, here is the list of the top four world philanthropist from number four to number one:
4. Chuck Feeney: In fourth place is Mr. Feeney. The name “Chuck Feeney” should not come as a surprise to us. Feeney has given to his Alma Mata, Cornell University, which has received billions of dollars in gifts over the years. He is also actively involved in giving towards causes in Vietnam.
3. Li Ka Shing: This man is the richest man in Hong Kong and the second richest in Asia. He is known to be quite casual in his dressing and is often referred to as “Superman” by the citizen in China. As of April 2016, Wikipedia reported he had donated about twenty-five billion dollars to charitable organizations.
2. Bill Gates: Our number two position is occupied by none other than Bill Gates. Have you heard of him before? Not at all? Okay, let us tell you a bit about him. He is one of the co-founders of Microsoft. Did his name just dawn on you? Yes! So, next time you use your Windows laptop, always remember Bill Gates. His specialty does not cover software alone. He is also one of the top philanthropists in the world. Together with his wife, they founded the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation which carries out research, amongst many other things. The foundation is currently valued at about thirty-five billion dollars.
1. Warren Buffet: If you are looking for someone that has been ranked one of the world’s wealthiest people successively, Warren Buffet is your man. He is an American investor, entrepreneur, and philanthropist. Did you just ask us why he is the top philanthropist in the world? Well, in the past, he has pledged about thirty-one billion dollars to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. That single donation is the biggest gift in the world. No other donation has topped it so far. He is one of the leaders of “philanthrocapitalism.” In 2010, Warren Buffet together with Mark Zuckerberg signed a promise where they pledged to donate half of their wealth to charity. They also vowed to invite others to join in the promise. If many wealthy people join this pledge, it might end up being one of the largest donations in world history.
Let us ask you this. If the rich were not philanthropic, who would the burden fall on in the society? There are many things we lack in the society. We are not saying it is their responsibility to shoulder the burden of the community. But let us face it. Would their businesses boom without us? Being a philanthropist is simply giving back to the society that has helped you. If you are a rich person reading this, be philanthropic. Your wealth will not reduce any less. Rather, you will gain a lot more than what you are giving out. Try it out, even if it’s just once!
Photo Credit: Entrepreneur