This is Part Two of our series on the Synergos Global Philanthropy Meeting, focusing in the Middle East. Synergos “addresses global poverty and social injustice by supporting and connecting leaders so they can work in collaboration to change the systems that keep people in poverty.” Pamela was invited to attend the New York Meeting of Global Philanthropists. Read Part One here.
From abroad… The UK is coming up with more and more innovations in philanthropy. I just read that their cultural minister is trying to allow people to make a donation when they are at ATMs. I am so heartened to see such good exploding across the world… in so many ways, that affect our lives practically!
Then we went on to a dinner session. The session was 20 tables related to CSR, health, innovation and education, and then all different country areas. I was put at the Middle East table, and it was amazingly fascinating. I wanted to see how UniversalGiving could support more projects in philanthropy in the Middle East, in this burgeoning area. Many of the forprofit people felt, interestingly enough, that an authoritarian government structure was better than a democracy. They felt these countries were living in anarchy with no government, and it would be better to have their lives ruled by some sort of government structure.
I’ve long known that just because a dictator is toppled, that doesn’t mean democracy will immediately exist. We have to be conscious of the fact that when America was created, it was called a “grand experiment.” No one had had this type of structure before, and we were fighting tooth and nail to prove it could work. I’m grateful that this structure, no matter how many “dents” it has, is still in place. It preserves so many freedoms for us, in the way that we operate, both in our personal lives and business.
Here’s too, an example of just one individual. Ron Bruder is a high net-worth donor working on providing employment opportunities for young professionals in the Middle East. He’s built shopping centers all over the U.S., and is now devoting himself full time to this effort.) It’s incredible. He’s giving hope to so many in Syria, Tunisia, Lebanon. Tunisia, he says, is the easiest… they just get it and in-country investors (important) match his funds, with positive government support, too.
I love sharing with you about these philanthropic insights in different areas across the world. Please comment on what you are doing. We’d love to hear from you!