Independent lists top philanthropists

Independent lists top philanthropists

News (UK)

As more people begin to focus on frugal living The Independent newspaper has gone against the trend and released a list of its top 30 UK philanthropists in 2008.

‘The giving list’ aims to highlight people from a variety of personal backgrounds who have engaged in the most generous acts of philanthropy across the UK.

The list reveals a range of donations that include an investment in a system to keep pigeons off buildings without harming the birds and a gift to a charity that enables disabled people to crew large sailing ships. The latter allowed the charity to keep one if its vessels that would otherwise have been sold to pay off debts.

The Independent cites homeless projects, international aid, medical research and educational trusts as the areas that will benefit the most from the philanthropists’ efforts.

The list was topped by Sir Tom Hunter, who has pledged to give over £1 bn to good causes in his lifetime. Christopher Hohn, whose hedge fund, the Children’s Investment Fund (TCI), finances the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF), run by his wife Jamie Cooper-Hohn, was second on the list. The list also included celebrities such as Sir Elton John, JK Rowling and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

The Independent drew up the list from a variety of sources, including nominations by Philanthropy UK readers and a number of philanthropists recently featured in Philanthropy UK publications.

Dr Frederick Mulder, who founded The Funding Network and is on the Philanthropy UK advisory board, was number 26 on the list. Other philanthropists named include Jack Petchey, Dame Vivien Duffield, Gordon Roddick, Sigrid Rausing, Sir Ian Wood, Dame Stephanie Shirley and Alec Reed CBE.

The total donations recorded for all 30 philanthropists amounted to £2.3bn in 2008.

Philanthropy UK Director Susan Mackenzie’s recent interviews with philanthropists for the Philanthropy UK Newsletter featured in an accompanying piece ('Top donors step in to save charities') that explored the significance of the donations from those on the list.

Robert Verkaik and Enjoli Liston of The Independent wrote, “Britain’s leading philanthropists have pledged to bail out charities whose services have been hit by dramatic falls in public donations triggered by the recession.”

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