Here’s a story of a billionaire who decided that he did not want to die with his fortune rather give it all away to charity.
Chuck Feeney, now 89 years old who made his fortune through Duty Free Shoppers alongside Robert Miller in 1660. He had billions but lived a simple lifestyle. He had a mindset and idea of “giving while living”. According to Forbes, He spent most of his fortune on charity, “Since you can’t take it with you, why not give it all away, have control of where it goes and see the results with your own eyes?.” “We would do some things differently, but I am very satisfied. I feel very good about completing this on my watch,” He told Forbes.
He has donated over 8$ billion which is over RM33 billion to different charities like universities and foundation over the last 4 decades through his foundation, the Atlantic Philanthropies. Feeney has given every dime away, most of it to Ireland. The Republic of Ireland received 1.3 billion in grants. In 2012 Forbes stated that Feeney was “the man who arguably has done more for Ireland than anyone since Saint Patrick” with his philanthropy.
Heard of the “secret billionaire”? Well, that man is in fact Chuck Feenley, He gave away most of his 8 billion dollars to charity anonymously before Forbes Magazine and The New York Times discovered this generous man.
He has inspired many billionaires over the years like the Bill Gates and Warren Buffet. Buffet said, “Chuck has set an example . . . . [He] is my hero and Bill Gates’ hero. He should be everybody’s hero.” According to irishcentral.com .
According to Forbes, He also gave huge sums to big problems like bringing peace to Northern Ireland, Modernising Vietnam’s health care system, and even spending over 350 million dollars and turning New York’s Roosevelt Island into a technology hub.
Forbes also mentioned that, “Warren Buffett and Bill Gates are the two most iconic philanthropists in the world, having given away tens of billions to much fanfare. But their role model is Chuck Feeney, a former billionaire who gave away his entire fortune almost completely unnoticed.”
Feeney was offered multiple awards but decided to turn them down but remains the one and only person to get a joint honorary degree from every Irish University.
Feeney finally completed his four decade mission by signing the documents to shutter the Atlantic Philanthropies.
Now Chuck at 86 lives in a small rented apartment in San Francisco.
Here is something we could all learn, “Giving While Living” Thank you Chuck Feeney for teaching us a valuable lesson.
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