The 10 Biggest Philanthropic Foundations In The World

While some people in the modern world can afford to acquire new and expensive items every day, others struggle to meet even the most basic needs. However, many generous donors are striving to assist the less fortunate by improving their quality of life through a variety of measures through their charitable organizations.

Although some charitable trusts have existed for a long time and their projects have helped better the lives of a great number of people, the recent pandemic has highlighted their significance via their unwavering support of humanitarian work in a variety of fields. Here are the top 10 biggest philanthropic foundations in the world.

10 Novo Nordisk Foundation, Denmark

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This organization is committed to scientific advances and activities for humanitarian and social issues. The organization is referred to as a “foundation with corporate interests” since, in addition to supporting scientific, humanitarian, and social objectives, it invests in a variety of enterprises that seek to find solutions for enhancing health, promoting sustainability, and combating diseases. According to their financial report from 31 December 2021, the charity foundation’s endowment is roughly $70.8 billion, making it one of the wealthiest charitable foundations in the world.

9 Bill And Melinda Gates Foundation, US

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The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, founded in 2000, is one of the most recognizable names in charity. As a charitable organization, it combats poverty, sickness, and inequality in developing nations. As Bill and Melinda Gates became more interested in social work over the years, they donated $20 billion worth of Microsoft stock to the organization’s fund. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation currently operates in numerous nations, including the United States, China, Ethiopia, India, South Africa, and the United Kingdom.

8 Howard Hughes Medical Institute, US

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In the late 1940s, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) was established after the passing of Howard R. Hughes as the trustees sold the Hughes Aircraft Company and used the proceeds to establish an endowment for the organization. According to its website, the private foundation had approximately $27.1 billion in consolidated net assets by the end of 2021. HHMI is a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering a more diverse scientific community.


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7 Wellcome Trust, UK

Henry Wellcome, a pharmaceutical entrepreneur, established The Wellcome Trust in 1936 with his riches, collection of medical objects, and vision. According to its website, the trust’s current investment portfolio is around $46.4 billion. Previously, the dividends of the pharmaceutical firm owned by Henry Wellcome, Wellcome Plc, were used to pay philanthropic grants. But in 1986, the trustees agreed to sell business stock. The Wellcome Trust intends to invest $19.5 billion by 2032 in cutting-edge scientific research to address critical health problems.

6 Mastercard Foundation, Canada

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Mastercard Foundation is one of several private charity foundations that aid in the education and success of the youth. It collaborates with prominent philanthropists, the commercial sector, and civic society to help young lives flourish. The Mastercard Foundation was created in 2006 with $4.4 billion, and it is currently one of the greatest philanthropic organizations with over $40 billion in assets. The institution is a subsidiary of Mastercard International and is independently governed by its board.

5 Azim Premji Foundation, India

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Business Line declared Azim Premji, founder, and chairman of Wipro Limited, to be the leading philanthropist in India in 2021. In 2000, he launched the Azim Premji Foundation to promote social development. Since its founding, he has transferred 74% of Wipro’s economic shares to the foundation, which, according to the university’s website, has an endowment of nearly $38 billion. The entire university is sponsored by Azim Premji’s personal contributions.

4 Lilly Endowment, US

Eli Lilly created the Lilly Endowment in 1936 in order to perpetuate the Lilly family legacy and assist youth through a financial pillar in the social sector. This foundation focuses mostly on education, youth, religion, and community development. Initially, Eli Lilly and Company gift stocks were the only sources of funding for the organization. Later, the company got additional stocks and shares from Lilly’s family members and non-family individuals. Additionally, Ruth Lilly, the niece of Eli Lilly, gave her will to the endowment. According to its website, it has approximately $17 billion in assets in 2019, making it one of the greatest charity trusts in the world.

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3 Ford Foundation, US

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The Ford Foundation was created in 1936 with the goal of utilizing its resources for scientific advancement, education, and the general good. Crossing the boundaries of the United States, the group is currently active in other developing nations, including Brazil, China, Eastern Africa, Nepal, India, Sri Lanka, and Indonesia. It is an independent corporation governed by a board of sixteen trustees. According to their website, the Ford Family Foundation is one of the largest philanthropies in the world with an endowment of $16 billion, as it now provides over $500 million annually.

2 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, US

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation was established in 1972 in an effort to improve the health and well-being of the American people. Early on, the foundation was financed by the generous shares of Johnson & Johnson, but according to their financial records for 2021, it currently has an endowment of almost $14.8 billion and a diversified investment portfolio. Through its grants and investments, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation works to improve healthcare facilities by promoting equity in all areas.

1 William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, US

In 1966, William and Flora Hewlett founded the philanthropic foundation. Their areas of focus include environmental conservation, education for all, support for the performing arts, gender equality, economic development, and successful philanthropy. The Hewlett Foundation is among the largest of its kind, with an endowment of nearly $13.3 billion (as of 2020). It also contributes to the growth of communities in the San Francisco Bay Area and improves lives.


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Sources: Yahoo, Arco Lab, Prestige


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