The year 2020 is known as one the most difficult year for individuals, organizations, continents, and the human being as a whole. Charitable trusts and some of the known philanthropists have donated generously to bring a balance to society.
Foods, donations for poor children’s studies, sponsoring the medical causes for lower grade people are some of the known areas where help has reached, according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy’s annual rankings of the 50 Americans who gave the most to charity last year.
There is another major cause that needs special attention from philanthropists: Climate change. Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, ranks first among the people and organizations who did charity. As a whole, he has donated $10 billion through his charitable trust Bezos Earth Fund for a better life. He is also the first person to touch the $200 billion wealth mark in 2020.
Bezos and His Ex-Wife Leads the Chart of Donors
When Bezos step down from the CEO post recently, he told the world that he wants to focus more on philanthropy activities. He also donated $100 million to Feeding America, an organization that provides food to the needy. Bezos also topped the chart in 2018 among top donors.
Bezos’s wife, MacKenzie Scott is the 2nd biggest donor of 2020. She gave $6.7 billion for food banks, racial justice issues, and human services.
Racial injustice is one of the burning issues. Jack Dorsey, Twitter CEO, donated $1.1 billion for the same cause. He ranks 5th among the top donors of 2020. Michael Jordan, a basketball star, also donated $50 million for the racial justice causes, as per a chronicle study.
Nick Tedesco, president of the National Center for Family Philanthropy said:
“When I look at the events of the last year, there was an awakening for the philanthropic sector. Donors supported community-led efforts of recovery and resiliency, particularly those led by people of color.”
Experts also believe that in the future philanthropy activities will attract more people.
Melissa Berman, president of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors says:
“I don’t think this approach is just a 12-month moment that started with COVID and continued following George Floyd and is going to recede. There has been change building among private donors.”
Top Donors and Total Donations in 2020
Overall, the top 50 donors gave $24.7 billion in 2020. If we compare this number with 2019, the donation is increased by $9 billion from the total donation of $15.8 billion in 2019.
Surprisingly, many donors are not that rich but still they donated to the cause, like Gordon Rausser, teaching staff at the University of California.
The Chronicle list is based on deep research conducted with donors, beneficiaries, and the public domain data.
Michael Bloomberg is the 3rd largest donor with a total amount of $1.6 billion. He mainly contributed to education and public health. Nike shoe owner Phil stands at 4th place with a total donation of $1.4 billion. On the other hand, knight foundation founder Penelope Knight secured the 5th position with a total of $900.7 million contributions.
Elon Musk is heavily criticized for not contributing to the novel cause. As per Vox’s article, he just contributed 0.5% of his total wealth. Donors contributed the maximum to small and mid-level charities. Surprisingly, universities/colleges received only $2 billion from the top 50 donors in 2020.