Golfer Rory McElroy in an interview on philanthropy for Coutts ‘Million Pound Donor Report 2017’ says that today’s philanthropists are almost duty bound to encourage the next wave of donors.
‘I think there will be enormous challenges for philanthropy in the years ahead – just as there were challenges in the past’, he said.
‘Essentially, I believe that today’s philanthropists are almost duty-bound, by engagement and proactivity, to bring along the next wave of donors,’ he added.
The former world’s number one golfer said there are many people and institutions able and ready to donate, and the challenge for those with a little influence is to highlight philanthropy’s relevance and necessary place in today’s society.
McElroy said that a trip to Haiti in 2011 in the aftermath of the earthquake prompted him to think more about the philanthropy and the role he could play.
“Golf and golfers were by no means a priority in Haiti in 2011 but I was struck by the welcome I received and generosity from people who had lost everything and had little or nothing to give.
“It was probably around the time of that visit, or soon after, that I really began to think seriously about ways I could give something back to help change the lives of young people, whether at home or further afield,” he added.
McElroy said that his first significant donation was to the Cancer Fund for Children, following an approach to Barry Funston, his Foundation’s CEO, by the Fund. McElroy said he committed to funding to help complete the Fund’s new respite centre and pledged a further €1.2 million for a new respite centre on Ireland’s west coast.
He said: “I can foresee inevitable changes in direction for my Foundation in the years to come and indeed, one of our latest projects has seen the Foundation begin to expand its work beyond the UK and Ireland by becoming involved with Sport Changes Life, a charity which brings Americans to Ireland and the UK to help coach and train young people.”
McElroy’s message for potential philanthropists is: “embrace it and reap the really positive rewards.”
Photo: Rory McElroy by Tour Pro Golf Clubs on Flickr.com
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