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Businessman sets up new NI foundation

A Northern Ireland businessman who has set up a new £500,000 foundation says he was inspired by philanthropists such as Chuck Feeney, Bill Gates and Warren Buffett. 

Mervyn McCall, who has set up the McCall Foundation with an initial gift of £500,000, said wealthy philanthropists may on a global scale have made a massive contribution to charity, yet he believes more can be done by people locally. 

“People like Chuck Feeney and Warren Buffet have done a huge amount for philanthropy but we need so many more people doing this because as statistics show, the gap is growing between rich and poor,” he said.


Why your supporters are wealthier than you think... Course by Catherine Miles. Background photo of two sides of a terraced street of houses.

“In Northern Ireland we have been behind the eight ball when it comes to philanthropy but it is getting talked about more and more and it is definitely growing which is fantastic,” Mr McCall said. 

Broad charitable objects including elderly people

Mr McCall was introduced to the Community Foundation for Northern Ireland by a financial advisor. The Foundation subsequently worked with him to establish the McCall Foundation to which will distribute £25,000 per year in perpetuity with one large grant of £15,000 and the remaining £10,000 spread between a number of beneficiaries in smaller grants. 

Mr McCall said he wanted to work with the Foundation because he didn’t want to deal with all the paperwork and he was impressed with their local knowledge in relation to good causes.

The objectives of the McCall Foundation are wide, however, there is a particular interest in issues affecting the elderly, especially the needs of elderly people just released from hospital.

“I understand that for some elderly people coming out of hospital can be a very difficult time in terms of not only getting the support they need but also in getting their confidence back – especially after a prolonged stay,” Mr McCall said.

You can find out more about the McCall Foundation by contacting the Community Foundation for Northern Ireland.