Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, inspired by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, has pledged his fortune to philanthropic causes.
Saudis often get a bad rep. Them and their oil money that they’re just drowning in. They’re all royalty, the whole country, and they each have a fleet of staff to help manage their emerald-encrusted palaces and 39 Rolls-Royces. Which they drive around in in their shemaghs made of crushed ruby paste. But one Saudi prince is opting to donate his entire fortune – all $32 billion of it – to charity.
In a press conference on Wednesday, Prince Alwaleed bin Talal announced his decision to donate most of his wealth. The move is part of a pledge modelled on the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation which asks the wealthy in society to pledge the majority of their funds to philanthropic causes. The money the prince is pledging will go towards helping a myriad of causes such as providing villages with electricity and building orphanages, all through his foundation Alwaleed Philanthropies. "The philanthropic pledge will help build bridges to foster cultural understanding, develop communities, empower women, enable youth, provide vital disaster relief and create a more tolerant and accepting world,” he said in a statement.
He also said that "Philanthropy is a personal responsibility, which I embarked upon more than three decades ago and is an intrinsic part of my Islamic faith. With this pledge, I am honouring my life-long commitment to what matters most - helping to build a more peaceful, equitable and sustainable world for generations to come.” And in this holy month centered on giving and understanding the plight of those less fortunate, this is a lovely gesture that goes beautifully with the spirit of the months. Although we’re fairly sure he will not be left desolate or anything after this hefty donation, enormous as it may be.
The prince however said that there is no deadline on when the funds will be donated.