It’s hard to imagine that the Open Society Foundations, a philanthropic network now spreading across over 100 nations, began with a single man’s dream in 1970. For George Soros, a man with humble beginnings as a Hungarian Holocaust survivor, it should have been unimaginable, but it was not. With the concept of philosopher Karl Popper in mind, Soros developed these foundations as a means of creating and developing societies which promoted individual welfare.
From his earliest philanthropic investments, Soros has demonstrated a commitment to the marginalized and oppressed within nations and globally. Recognizing the deep harm caused by Soviet Communism, Soros sought to undo this damage by founding a university to promote and teach critical thinking, and investing in cultural exchange activities that would expose residents to different cultures and ways of governing. Read more on NYTimes.com
For Soros, a society exists to support and promote the welfare of its residents. Like Karl Popper, he believes that societies will only thrive when they support individual rights and expression under some form of representative government. With this overarching goal of individual freedom in mind, Soros has supported organizations that defend individual civic rights, same-sex marriages, and directly opposed xenophobic policies and government actions. Learn more about George at Biography.com
While Soros has kept a long view of global interest and promoted global welfare, he has also made significant contributions to causes within the United States political and social welfare arenas. He has given millions of dollars in support of unlawfully imprisoned citizens, victims of police brutality, and immigrants being harassed or poorly represented in the legal system. While his billions of dollars in philanthropic donations over the decades have been to a huge variety of causes, organizations, and people, a common thread is clear: throughout the years, George Soros has used his wealth and influence to help the marginalized and oppressed.