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At least one in ten billionaires have donated for COVID-19 relief

More than 10% of the world's nearly three thousand billionaires made a philanthropic commitment in support of COVID-19 response and relief efforts between January and May. According to the Billionaire Census 2020, billionaires who have donated were more likely to be in the tech industry and were more likely to be under the age of 50, to be self-made and to be wealthier. The share of women was larger among COVID-19 donors and those women were more likely to be self-made. The seventh edition of the annual study also found that the number of billionaires globally rose 8.5% in 2019, to 2,825, while their combined wealth grew 10.3%, to $9.4 trillion.

With Islamic social finance increasingly responding to global humanitarian efforts, Muslim donors explain why they choose to give to refugees

There’s an increasing awareness of the significance of Islamic social finance and philanthropy with more organizations reaching out to potential donors. In the Middle East, three donors explain why they choose to give to refugees through the United Nations’ Refugee Agency, UNHCR’s Refugee Zakat Fund. The most important reasons for them are how widely the organization distributes aid and how transparent and honest it is. Houssam Chahine, UNHCR's regional head of private sector partnerships, says the need for Zakat and Sadaqah for refugees this year is even greater. He is confident that the Fund can raise more donations this year in support of vulnerable refugee families, because challenging times persuade people to find ways to give more.

We need responsible multifaith solidarity to fight the pandemic

On April 11, the UN-secretary general, Antonio Guterres, urged religious leaders of all faiths to unite and work together to fight the common battle against COVID-19. The call for interfaith solidarity is echoing at a time when governments are discouraging or even forbidding all kinds of public gatherings including religious festivals, rituals and large congregations. Religious leaders from Christianity, Judaism and Islam have come together to develop creative ways to provide comfort, care and worship services to individuals and families via different digital media. Multifaith unity and collaborative efforts are very much needed to mitigate the pandemic.

#Philanthropy in emerging market countries and the opportunity for radical transformation

The global coronavirus crisis has exacerbated existing inequalities and laid bare the fissures in our societies. If philanthropic actors were able to ignore this state of affairs before, they no longer can. If we are to first survive, then thrive, we can no longer afford to shy away from supporting radical changes in the world. "The Role of Philanthropy in Society" study demonstrates the transformative potential of philanthropy. The study reveals a charitable impulse that is rooted historically and culturally in all of the countries in the study. Funding for progressive work does exist, but is limited. In all of these countries it has traditionally come from foreign funders. One of the major developments in emerging market countries has been the rise of corporate philanthropy. Common to all country papers emerging from the study is a mistrust of NGOs by donors who see civil society as unaccountable. Individual giving holds promise, as well as community philanthropy.

Dubai Islamic Bank donates AED16 million to Zakat Fund projects

The Dubai Islamic Bank donated AED16 million to the Zakat Fund. Abdullah Aqeeda Al Muhairi, Secretary-General of the Zakat Fund, praised the bank for its donation as well as for its positive humanitarian and charitable role in improving the life of needy people. He also called on Islamic banks and institutions to follow the initiative of the Dubai Islamic Bank to provide zakat money to deserving groups and help the Zakat Fund achieve its goals.

#Bangladesh’s first digital crowd-funding platform Ekdesh launched

Bangladesh launched its first digital crowd-funding platform Ekdesh for raising funds and disbursing them as zakat or financial aid. Information and Communication Technology Division State Minister Zunaid Ahmed Palak inaugurated the platform via an online inauguration program. People of the country can donate to the prime minister’s relief fund, the Islamic Foundation, or other non-government organizations through this platform to help the poor people or small businesses. Several organizations like Brac, Bidyanondo Foundation, Center for Zakat Management, Centre for Rehabilitation of the Paralysed (CRP), and Sajida Foundation have already joined the platform.

Foundations Help Launch Financial Inclusion Nonprofit

Sponsored by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Mojaloop software project has announced the launch of the Mojaloop Foundation. With additional support from founding sponsors Omidyar Network, the Rockefeller Foundation, Coil, Google, and ModusBox, the foundation will work to advance its free open-source software as a public good in service of financial inclusion globally. The software serves as a blueprint for how to simplify and reduce the cost of payment interoperability. This will enable banks, digital service providers, government agencies, NGOs, and other entities to develop tools that increase opportunities for low-income and unbanked individuals to access financial services.

Alwaleed Philanthropies allocates $30mln to fight COVID-19

Alwaleed Philanthropies has allocated $30 million to a variety of diverse initiatives to battle against COVID-19 in collaboration with a variety of partners. The fund, chaired by Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, includes an additional $20.6 million on top of $9.4 million of existing funds, which have been reallocated for the fight against COVID-19. Continuing to support the Middle East and North Africa, the fund includes a significant allocation towards initiatives including allocation to UN-Habitat to improve water, sanitation and hygiene in the most vulnerable communities. Alwaleed Philanthropies will be working with the Gates Philanthropy Partners to fund a number of health projects to accelerate the development of therapeutics to protect vulnerable populations.

Qatari humanitarian organisation pledges $43mn to UNHCR Refugee Zakat Fund

Qatar based Thani Bin Abdullah Bin Thani Al-Thani Humanitarian Fund will contribute $43mn to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Refugee Zakat Fund. UNHCR also launched the findings of its 2020 Islamic Philanthropy Report. According to the report, in 2019 the Refugee Zakat Fund received $43mn, including the largest ever single contribution made by Thani Bin Abdullah Bin Thani Al-Thani Humanitarian Fund of over $35mn. The Fund’s Zakat contribution has helped support 164,696 vulnerable families. The donation has provided much-needed cash assistance to fulfill immediate needs, as well as, the provision of food.

Refugee Zakat Fund received over $43 million last year

The Refugee Zakat Fund had received a total of more than $ 43 million in contributions during the past year, including an individual contribution that is the largest ever made. It was made by the Qatari Thani Bin Abdullah Bin Thani Al Thani Humanitarian Fund with a value of more than $ 35 million. On March 25, the UNHCR launched an urgent appeal for $255 million to reduce risks and minimize the impact of the coronavirus outbreak in vulnerable communities. UNHCR launched the Refugee Zakat Fund in 2019 as a trustworthy platform for distributing Zakat funds to help refugees and internally displaced persons from the most vulnerable groups.

Philanthropy cannot self-isolate, and good ideas should never be quarantined

From 12-20 March the European Foundation Centre (EFC) surveyed its membership to find out what measures they are taking in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. All respondents confirmed that their organisations have taken internal measures to protect staff, visitors, and the public. 70% of respondents said they were using “smart-working” methods to compensate for working from home. 79% of respondents said programmes will be harder to implement. There was a general interest in finding collaborative ways to fund and/or exchanging ideas, information and good practices. On 25 March the EFC and DAFNE jointly issued the European Philanthropy Statement on COVID-19, calling for a strong spirit of European solidarity in the face of the current adversity. The message is clear: philantropy as a sector must show a unified, coherent response to this current threat as well as those that lie ahead.

Etiqa gives RM1mil to buy ventilators

Etiqa is contributing RM1mil for the purchase of ventilators through Mercy Malaysia’s Pandemic Fund to support strategic preparedness and response plan to the Covid-19 virus. This initiative will also help ensure all communities are well prepared, especially those with the weakest health systems. With the number of people infected with Covid-19 increasing in Malaysia, the number of ventilators available at designated hospitals will be insufficient to deal with the number of critical cases. Etiqa Insurance & Takaful Group CEO Kamaludin Ahmad feels obligated to help the country battle Covid-19 and hopes that this contribution will mean that no patient will have to be denied lifesaving care due to ventilator shortage.

Jack Ma Foundation, Alibaba Foundation donation arrives

The first batch of the much-needed medical supplies donated by the Jack Ma Foundation and the Alibaba Foundation has arrived in Pakistan. The shipment is part of the donation of medical supplies to 10 Asian countries announced on March 21. Collectively, the nations will receive a total of 1.8 million masks; kits for testing 210,000 people, 36,000 pieces of protective clothing, as well as essential medical equipment such as ventilators and forehead thermometers. Pakistan's Disaster Management Authority will transport and distribute the supplies throughout the country. The remainder of the donation is expected to reach Pakistan soon.

Saudi billionaire's charity adds second donation to help global polio fight

Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Al Saud has joined Bill Gates and other leading figures to announce the first round of funding to a major global initiative to end polio. Alwaleed Philanthropies’ donation of $2 million to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) will support the creation of action plans to expand access to polio vaccination and help reach children everywhere. Alwaleed Philanthropies has also worked with key partners such as Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Carter Center and UNICEF to tackle Guinea Worm disease, river blindness, measles and rubella, amongst other preventable and treatable diseases. The GPEI pledging event launched a fundraising push to fill the $3.27 billion funding gap. So far, $2.6 billion has been raised.

Khalifa Foundation receives donation from Dubai Islamic Bank

The Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation received a AED1.2 million donation from Dubai Islamic Bank, to support its efforts to provide laptops to school and university students. The financial support comes as part of efforts to implement remote learning initiatives as part of UAE measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus, COVID-19. The foundation's director Mohammed Haji Al Khouri praised the bank’s donation as well as its timely response to the initiative. He stated that the foundation aims to strengthen its partnerships with government authorities, banks, companies, key sponsors and strategic partners to help mitigate the impact of the pandemic.

Philanthropists in UAE donate millions to fight Covid-19

As the UAE is stepping up its fight against the new coronavirus (Covid-19), the Emirati business community is showing its solidarity and support. Abdul Rahim Al Zarooni, chairman of Zarooni Group, has allocated Dh10 million to support medical and preventive supplies in Dubai. Khalaf Al Habtoor, CEO of Al Habtoor Group, has donated 50 state-of-the-art ambulance vehicles and a medically-equipped building to be used for quarantine purposes. Al Futtaim Group has set up a fund of Dh100 million for retailers at its malls in Dubai. The fund will cover up to three months' rent relief for 'eligible' tenants, who run the risk of being caught in business disruption and slowdown. Another Emirati family business group has donated ambulances and medical equipment worth Dh12 million.

Report Calls for Multi-Stakeholder Partnerships to Accelerate SDGs

A new report from Philanthropy University, the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, and GSVlabs offers recommendations for strengthening multi-stakeholder partnerships focused on advancing the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals. According to the report, SDG Partnerships Agenda 2030: Accelerating Progress, According to the report, the global community faces a $2.5 trillion annual funding gap with respect to the SDGs and no nation is on track. Studies have shown that only about a quarter of existing partnerships are meeting their objectives, while many participants in such partnerships are concerned about their costs. Taking steps to partner differently will enable stakeholders to leverage the untapped potential of philanthropy as not only a funder but a facilitator, of government as not only an approver but a builder, of civil society organizations not only as implementors but experts, and of the private sector as an accelerator of rather than a barrier to SDG efforts.

IsDB celebrates ‘International Day of Education’

The Islamic Development Bank Group’s President Dr. Bandar Hajjar inaugurated 'the International Day of Education' event at the bank’s headquarters in Jeddah. The aim of this celebration is to support the efforts to achieve the 4th Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 4) of the United Nations relative to education, to provide quality, equitable and inclusive education for all. Today, over 258 million children and young adults are still out of school worldwide, two thirds of them in member countries. There are 617 million children and adolescents who are illiterate and cannot perform basic mathematical operations. In sub-Saharan Africa, the completion rate for the lower secondary level of education is less than 40%, and approximately 4 million children and refugees are out of school. The IsDB supports investment in education and human resources development through numerous programs and projects. Cooperations include the Global Partnership for Education "GPE", UNESCO, the German GIZ, Education Above All, Save the Children, etc.

Results of global family philanthropy survey released

Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors (RPA) and Campden Wealth published the report "Global Trends and Strategic Time Horizons in Family Philanthropy 2020". The report is based on a survey of 201 families of significant wealth who are engaged in philanthropic giving. According to the report, education is the top cause families give to globally, constituting 29% of the average philanthropic portfolio, followed by health at 14%, and the arts, culture and sports at 10%. Just 8% of giving goes towards the environment global concern for climate change. According to Dr. Rebecca Gooch, Director of Research at Campden Wealth, we are in the early stages of a significant transition in which vast sums of wealth are changing hands between generations. The emerging generation is acutely aware of the largescale global challenges it will face, such as climate change.

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