Paul Allen donates $100 million to fight Ebola
Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) co-founder Paul Allen one-upped his good friend co-founder and former CEO Bill Gates with an even bigger donation to fight the Zaire Ebolavirus (ZEBOV) which has engulfed a trio of nations in western Africa in a deadly, fast-growing epidemic.
Gates and his wife have pledged to give away all their money to charity before they die. His Microsoft-derived fortune current makes him the world's second richest man with a net worth of $81.4B USD. In September he announced that he would be giving $50M USD to fight Ebola in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea. The announcement prompted Gates' close friend and protege, Facebook, Inc. (FB) CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg, to pledge $25M USD to the cause last week. (Zuckerberg — "only" the 21st richest man on the planet with $33.1B USD — has also promised to donate all of his and his wife's fortune to charity before they die.)
Paul Allen, one-upped both Zuckerberg and Gates, announcing this week on Twitter that he would be donating $100M USD to fight the disease. His donation will go towards:
- A one-month relief mission with a staff of 12 doctors and nurses
- public hand-washing stations
- household protection kits
- University of Massachusetts (UMass) Medical School
- $7.5M donation will go toward's the school's effort to train medical personnel in Liberia and provide them with lab equipment
- World Health Organization
- A donation to help it track and send staff to fight the disease
A 3D animation depicts an Ebolavirus operating in an infected human host. [Image Source: Visual Science]
Paul Allen had already pledged $9M USD to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to fight the disease, so the recent pledge takes his total donations to $109M USD. His charitable organization — the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation — has launched a special project "Tackle Ebola" complete with its own website. The site serves both to track the progress made with Allen's donation and to encourage members of the public to reach out with donations of their own.
With a wealth of $16.2B USD, Paul Allen is currently the 55th richest person in the world. He's also a signatory of The Giving Pledge, pledging to give his fortune to charity before he dies.
When it comes to fighting Ebola, Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen is putting his money where his mouth is, donating $109M USD to the cause, thus far. [Image Source: Geekwire]
As of Oct. 22, Ebola has claimed at least 4,868 lives and infected 9,911 people in Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone, according to the WHO's latest numbers [PDF].