22nd May 2017
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Mining magnate and his wife set Australian donation record
Author: Ben Hocking
Forrests give $400m to charities

Mining magnate Andrew Forrest set a new benchmark for philanthropic donations yesterday when he announced he and his wife, Nicola, would be giving $400 million to various charities.

At the Canberra announcement on Monday, Forrest urged all Australian to “give what you can, if it isn’t money, then time is just as valuable.”

The $400m donation will be used to fund a variety of social and scientific causes, including cancer research and the eradication of slavery.

Mr Forrest made the donation announcement at a function attended by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, Opposition leader Bill Shorten and Hollywood star Russell Crowe.

“Nicola and I have been very fortunate to build up a couple of businesses from scratch... we decided that if we ever got to the point where we could afford to, we would put that wealth to the highest social use,” Mr Forrest told Fairfax.

"It can be easy to give with your heart, because there is so much need, particularly in vulnerable communities," Mr Forrest said.

"The challenge is to give with your heart, mind and soul; to give cleverly so that maximum impact is achieved over the longer term, and to give wisely so that your own values are reflected.”

Mr Forrest, the founder of mining company Fortescue Metals, is estimated by Forbes to have a net worth of more than $5.5 billion.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said it was "the biggest single philanthropic gift" in Australia's history, and the largest donation by living Australians.

"It is a game-changer in the Australian philanthropic community. And it will change the lives of thousands of people here in Australia and around the world," Mr Turnbull said.

"But all of us should seek to do as much as we can with what we have. So, this is real leadership and leading by example."

While the $400m donation is the largest single donation by a living Australian, there have been bigger donations from deceased estates.

Private health magnate, the late Paul Ramsay, bequeathed some $3 billion to the Ramsay Foundation to address health, education and disadvantage.

What do you think? Does Mr Forrest’s donation encourage you to try and give more to charitable causes? Should Australia’s richest citizens follow suit and start donating a greater proportion of their wealth?

Read more at The Guardian

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    COMMENTS

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    go veg!
    23rd May 2017
    12:28pm
    When we found out that 97% of donations go to human related causes, we decided to donate as much as we can to wildlife and environmental causes. 3% is a drop in the bucket for such needy causes especially wildlife species that are going extinct because of the explosive growth in human population. Even so, good on Mr and Mrs Forrest for realising you only need a few pairs of shoes to live a happy life and giving a large chunk to others' benefit.
    trood
    23rd May 2017
    1:26pm
    I'm with you go veg, as usual everything for the humans who sh*t in their own nest and nothing for the animals which is where my money goes
    KSS
    23rd May 2017
    2:36pm
    Its just never enough is it go veg and trood? $400 m and you still want more!
    go veg!
    23rd May 2017
    2:44pm
    No, we didn't say more, KSS, just a better balance between helping human animals and non-human animals as well as funding improving the environment which benefits us all. By the way, apparently he's worth $5.5B so $400K, while extremely generous, isn't going to affect his lifestyle much.
    Sundays
    23rd May 2017
    3:28pm
    Go veg $400Million which is substantial in anyone's language. It's a lot to give away, and he has every right to fund the charities close to his heart. Well done!
    Dallas1955
    24th May 2017
    7:29am
    go veg! and trood I agree and tend to give more to animal welfare and environmental charities because so much in general goes to humans who are the ones causing most of the problems.
    Retired Knowall
    26th May 2017
    12:38pm
    So Go Veg, how much have you donated over the last 10 - 20years?
    MICK
    23rd May 2017
    12:29pm
    I saw this last night and am amazed. I have to take my hat off to Ziggy Forrest for doing what the rest of our rich refuse to do, give back to society after decades of taking whatever it can take legally or otherwise.
    There should be more charitable works in this country. Many ordinary Australians do give and our country is known for its generosity, but the rich worldwide are not generally a part of this ethos preferring to keep it all like Uncle Scrooge sitting in the vault.
    Well done Ziggy. I'll buy you a beer any day!
    KSS
    23rd May 2017
    2:27pm
    You have absolutely no idea what or how much the 'rich' give to charitable causes Mick. Most would do so quietly without fanfare. Just because they are not front page news does not mean it doesn't happen.

    Just another opportunity for you to make an ill-informed dig at those better off than you.
    MICK
    23rd May 2017
    2:43pm
    You are correct in that the public does not have access to figures but some of our more generous donors have lamented that the rich are not contributing in our country. Same sort of sentiment as Warren Buffet has made about his.
    By all means call me out KSS but better for you to lobby the ATO to provide some sort of data without mentioning the names. That would put the matter into perspective.
    If the rich were giving they would not be financing their government to give them more via unfair tax cuts. That is illogical!
    Last thing KSS, you do not know my financial position. My wife and I may not be in the class of Forest but you make some assumptions there. I challenge you to donate the same PERCENTAGE of your income as we do. Unlikely! If any at all.
    KSS
    23rd May 2017
    5:50pm
    What makes you think I don't already donate part of my salary Mick? You don't of course. And no the ATO should absolutely not be lobbied to provide what is essentially private information on anyone's donation habits.
    MICK
    23rd May 2017
    7:47pm
    I don't have a salary but we still make donations. Sometimes a bit too much but when the cause is right so is the chequebook.
    I never indicated divulging personal information. My idea is to provide figures for income groups. I think that would shut down your spiel as I believe it would show just how little wealthy Australians actually do contribute. Not sure who it was anymore (John Symonds/Dick Smith?) but I recall a wealthy Australian saying how little the top gives. Let's get this out in the open KSS. I thought so!
    Retired Knowall
    26th May 2017
    4:16pm
    Is Ziggy the brother of Twiggy?
    floss
    23rd May 2017
    1:14pm
    You have said it all a lot better than I. He along with Dick Smith are great Australians.Well said Mick.
    Jan
    23rd May 2017
    2:35pm
    Twiggy Forrest pays 6% tax, and this "charitable" donation will be claimed on tax too, so in the long run, the Australian taxpayer is paying. Not so generous when looked at in this light.
    KSS
    23rd May 2017
    2:37pm
    I sincerely hope you will never need the cancer research his donations will fund!
    MICK
    23rd May 2017
    2:48pm
    Maybe a bit unfair Jan. Forrest could do like a growing list of our wealthy dirt bags and head to an offshore tax shelter...if he does not already have one.
    You may be missing the point also that a tax deduction does not mean you get to keep it all. Maybe KSS can help you with that one.

    You appear to be a champion of the rotten rich KSS. That is a shame and they do not need it. But then perhaps you are a part of the club as you certainly are a bit sensitive about our 'poor' rich Australians who mostly rort the system and allow people on $60,000 to pay their share.
    Radish
    24th May 2017
    7:42pm
    Australia is well know for its "tall poppy syndrome". A perfect example in some of the responses here.

    Both sides of politics were unanimous in their praise of his generosity.

    It is a very large donation going to worthy causes and I care not that he will get a tax deduction.
    Retired Knowall
    26th May 2017
    12:40pm
    How much have you donated Jan?

    23rd May 2017
    3:43pm
    A man does a great thing and all Mick and Jan can do is bag them.

    Not happy Jan and Mick

    You need happiness in your lives
    Misty
    23rd May 2017
    3:57pm
    Raphael, Jan and Mick are not bagging Twiggy just calling it as it is for some of the wealthy citizens of our country, I know a friend of mine who is quite wealthy is very, what I would call mean, when it comes to donating either time or money. Well done the Forrests, apparently they used to borrow money to give away in the early days until they were wealthy enough to do it with their own, another thing to give them credit for they employ a lot of Indigenous people in the business too.
    MICK
    23rd May 2017
    4:20pm
    ???? I patted Twiggy on the back and acknowledged that he did a good thing. Read my post.
    Don't know where you are coming from Raphael.
    Anonymous
    23rd May 2017
    7:30pm
    Apologies Mick

    You did too.

    But I wish posters would stop bagging the rich . Yes some are tight. Others give freely with no pomp or ceremony
    Anonymous
    23rd May 2017
    7:30pm
    Apologies Mick

    You did too.

    But I wish posters would stop bagging the rich . Yes some are tight. Others give freely with no pomp or ceremony
    MICK
    23rd May 2017
    7:42pm
    I have never denied rich people their spoils Raphael as long as they pay their rightful taxes and do not cheat the system. I admire people who are self made.
    My issue, if you can call it that, is reserved for those who do the wrong thing. From all accounts there are quite a few who fit into this category but it would be nice for the ATO to release figures of charitable works so that the general public can see if its beliefs are correct or otherwise.
    MICK
    23rd May 2017
    7:48pm
    Apology accepted Raphael. Once was enough. Cheers.
    floss
    23rd May 2017
    3:56pm
    Gee Mick some people are hard to please,i bet they support the Greed is Good Party.
    Misty
    23rd May 2017
    3:59pm
    Some of our more wealthier people could take a leaf out of the Forrest's book when it comes to Philanthropic donations.
    MICK
    23rd May 2017
    4:22pm
    Ditto. Doubt our rich feel that way though. Always take take take. If not then they would not have pushed through tax cuts for themselves when they are doing very nicely.
    Watto
    23rd May 2017
    6:24pm
    Never see anything coming from Gina Rinehart. She's as tight as two coats of paint.
    Anonymous
    23rd May 2017
    7:28pm
    Some people dont need to flaunt their donations to stoke their egos
    MICK
    23rd May 2017
    7:50pm
    Whilst none of us knows if Gina is giving a razoo or not her mutterings about Australians might appear to indicate 'not'. Come on Gina...prove me wrong. Maybe I am.
    gadsby
    23rd May 2017
    9:17pm
    Well Watto weve never seen anything about how much you donate either,must be a bit of GIna in you too.
    Cant believe what i read on here sometimes,a guy donates 400 mil,and most here want to climb into him.
    if the truth is known most of the "glass half empty "on here wouldnt part with $4 ,and if they did would demand a reciept.
    MICK
    23rd May 2017
    9:59pm
    "Receipt"!
    I think most of us have acknowledged Twiggy's gift. There should be more of this type of Australian. God knows the country needs them.
    Radish
    26th May 2017
    8:34am
    Some castigate for publicly announcing their donations others castigate because Gina Rhinehart has not made donations.

    I know for a fact that Gina does donate large sums of money but does it privately.

    Why cannot people just accept at face value a very generous donation from the Forrest family!
    ex PS
    27th May 2017
    4:17pm
    I was always taught that true charity should never be a thing that is disclosed as it diminishes a charitable act if the person makes it an occasion for personal acclaim.
    On this occasion though I see the publicity as an attempt to induce other well off Australians to follow an example. Mr. Forrest is a great Australian and even more is a great person.
    Dallas1955
    24th May 2017
    7:24am
    And a lot of people think rich business tycoons are greedy. Good on you Twiggy and Nicola.
    JAID
    26th May 2017
    9:54am
    Yes, it is good and noble. No-one 'has' to give anything but required taxes no matter what advantage or disadvantage may be at play.

    I just love the line. "We can feed the kids and have paid off the mortage, so why not?" Indeed, why not it can't leave with you.

    I prefer not to see this type of thing as charity but as attempting to make a valuable difference.
    ex PS
    27th May 2017
    4:17pm
    Exactly.


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