MacKenzie Scott, the billionaire philanthropist known for her impromptu donations to charities and racial equity causes, has given 2.7 billion Dollars to 286 organisations.
Ms. Scott, the ex-wife of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, wrote in a post on the website Medium that she and her husband Dan Jewett made the donations to enable the recipients to continue their work and as a “signal of trust and encouragement” to them and others.
She made clear in her announcement that she is troubled by the increasing concentration of vast wealth among a small proportion of individuals.
She and Mr. Jewett worked with a team of researchers and philanthropy advisers “to give away a fortune that was enabled by systems in need of change”.
“In this effort, we are governed by a humbling belief that it would be better if disproportionate wealth were not concentrated in a small number of hands and that the solutions are best designed and implemented by others,” Ms. Scott said.
The 286 organisations chosen in the most recent donations included “equity-oriented” non-profits working in neglected areas and were selected from a rigorous process of research and analysis, Ms. Scott said.
The latest recipients range from universities — including 40 million Dollars apiece to the University of Central Florida and the University of Texas at San Antonio — to refugee resettlement groups and civil rights groups, as well as arts and culture organisations suffering from the coronavirus pandemic and non-profits.
It is the third round of no-strings-attached philanthropic gifts Ms. Scott has made.
In 2020, Ms. Scott made two similar announcements, donating a combined 6 billion Dollars to COVID-19 relief, gender equity, historically black colleges and universities and other schools.