Counter pandemic measures require considerable monetary resources and many billionaires have already donated huge sums of money in order to take the control over COVID-19. So, what were these donations spent on?
The most unusual act of kindness was made by the head of Amazon.com. After stating that the pandemic causes hunger among American families in public, Jeff Bezos allocated USD 100m to the Feeding America non-commercial organization in order to help replenish the national chain of warehouses with the goal of “delivering food to those countless families who need it.”
Bill and Melinda Gates donated USD 100m from their charity fund to the countries in South-Eastern Asia and Africa. They considered them to be more vulnerable and unprotected. Part of this money will be allocated for development of diagnosis the virus, treatment and development of vaccine.
Mark Zuckerberg supported the initiatives of Gates’ spouse by adding another USD 25m for the same purposes. As he said, he wants this donation to go towards creation of new drugs against coronavirus for those who got already infected.
The Founder of Alibaba, Jack Ma, decided not to stand out too far and invested approximately USD 14.5m. These funds were transferred to The Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity in Australia, and two research companies in China, which are currently working hard to develop a vaccine that can help prevent the spread of the virus. A part of this sum was aimed at helping USA and Africa by sending them cargo with medical masks and tests for coronavirus.
However, the most generous donation was made by the head of Twitter, Jack Dorsey, who allocated USD 1b to Start Small LLC which was created to counter coronavirus.
Once the pandemic is over, Dorsey promised to use this fund for sponsoring the education of young ladies.
“I hope my example will inspire others to do something similar. Life is too short. So, let’s help people today,” said Dorsey.
The second biggest donation to counter the virus was made in the amount of USD 140m by Nornickel, the world’s leading nickel and platinum production company, and its head, Vladimir Potanin, a Russian businessman and philanthropist.
This donation encourages a father-like relationship with the employees, considering that Potanin thought practically about every staff member even in most distant parts of Russia. The sum was directed for purchasing new medical equipment, such as over 100 ventilators, thousands of tests for laboratory diagnostics and immediate tests, 500 thermal imagers and 3 million disinfection positions.
Furthermore, 1.2 million masks were purchased and sent to the regions. In addition, a huge donation was made for modernization a number of hospitals and building a new hospital in northwestern Russia near the Norwegian and Finnish border.
All these examples above are luckily not the last. Li Ka-Shing, who is one of the most influential businessmen in Asia and the richest man in Hong Kong, gave about USD 10m to help the city of Wuhan. The world-famous fashion designer, Giorgio Armani, supported Italy by donating USD 1.4m to its hospitals. The American financier and investor, George Soros, distributed USD 2.2m between Milan and Budapest, the cities where he was born and raised.
The positive bottom line is: charity has no borders nor nationalities.