Elon Musk discovered his love for technology when he was a young kid growing up in South Africa. After pursuing his education in the United States, he began working as a tech entrepreneur, creating successful start-ups like Zip2 and X.com and being a significant contributor in PayPal. In 2004, he decided to revolutionize automobiles and space by launching Tesla and SpaceX. Earning hefty investments and making large sums of sales worldwide, Elon Musk has a staggering net worth of $229.1 billion, making him the richest man in the world. The mogul is also a philanthropist, having made donations to various causes to help communities grow and excel.
Through his organization and shares in Tesla, Elon Musk has used everything in his power to become an influential donor in the world. A generous person who wants to create a change in society, let’s look at Elon Musk’s philanthropic journey.
3 Establishing The Musk Foundation
While developing and creating the companies Tesla and SpaceX, Elon Musk knew that potential students like him needed funds to bring their ideas to life. In 2002, he established the Musk Foundation with his brother Kimbal where the duo provided grants to people of various backgrounds. The grants are particularly made in the fields of human space exploration research and advocacy, science and engineering education, the development of safe artificial intelligence, and pediatric research. According to The Guardian, the Musk Foundation has donated over $54 million to organizations in the field of education, medical, and environmental sectors in the last 15 years.
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From 2007 and 2014, the organization distributed over $3.1 million in cash to various causes, including the Deepwater Horizon Disaster and the Fukushima earthquake. Additionally, the organization has helped various causes in America and worldwide. In 2010, the organization launched Kitchen Community with $183,000 in Colorado to help children in marginalized communities prepare fresh food. Now called Big Green, the community has raised over $47 million since its inception. In 2011, he made two $50,000 donations to Mirman School of Gifted Children and $10,000 in 2012 to Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), a non-profit that develops medical therapies.
2 A Philanthropy Spending Spree
Along with donating through his Musk Foundation, the mogul has also made private donations from his pocket and private shares. As mentioned by Forbes, he donated $1 million to #TeamTrees, a global crowdfunding project by YouTuber Jimmy Donaldson, better known as MrBeast. The project surpassed $6 million, and the team planted over 6 million trees worldwide.
Elon Musk first became the richest man in the world in January 2021. Within a few months after that, he went on a spending spree every few months to publicly donate to charities and communities. He committed over $150 million to charities within the first four months. In April 2021, he announced his biggest jackpot announcement, a $100 million prize for the winner who finds a viable solution for climate change.
Elon Musk spent 2021 making more donations and the communities he helped previously. He gave $30 million to non-profits in Rio Grande Valley, South Texas, out of which $20 million was given to charter schools, and the remaining $10 million was used to renovate the city of Brownsville, Texas as reported by Vox. He surprised the online platform Khan Academy with a $5 million donation. He also gave away $5 million to Boston researchers studying the coronavirus and $1 million to a food bank called Feeding Texas.
1 Saving The World
In October 2021, David Beasley, the director of the World Food Program, said that 2% of Elon Musk’s net worth could stop world hunger. Within a day, Musk asked the World Food Program to explain how $6 billion would help solve world hunger and that he would sell his Tesla stock for it. The Twitter thread gained a lot of traction, and the news simmered down after a few weeks. Following this, in February 2022, it was announced that Musk made a mysterious donation of $5.7 billion, a figure close to Musk’s 2% net worth, as noted by Fortune.
Amidst the attacks Russia has instigated on Ukraine, a Ukrainian official made a public plea to Elon Musk on Twitter, asking him to provide a satellite internet connection through his company, Starlink. The mogul quickly responded to the request and activated the system within twenty-four hours. The network has helped the country and the President remain connected to world leaders and offer support and first-hand updates about the ongoing crisis in the country.
From assisting local organizations in America to helping during a world crisis, Elon Musk has used his fortune to help grow the communities around him by supporting them through grants and money. He continues to work with his Musk Foundation and as the owner of Tesla and SpaceX to support organizations and non-profits.
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Sources: The Guardian, Forbes, Vox, Fortune
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