Former President Clinton gets $2 billion in pledges to tackle world's woes
By Edith Honan | September 26, 2012 12:21 PM EST
Healthcare for athletes with mental disabilities, organic know-how for Indian farmers and solar technology for isolated communities were among the pledges made at former U.S. President Bill Clinton's philanthropic summit, which ended on Tuesday.
With its theme of "Designing for Impact" and an emphasis on improving the lives of women and girls in the developing world, heads of states, business leaders and humanitarians at the eighth annual Clinton Global Initiative made 150 new pledges valued at about $2 billion (1.2 billion pounds) to tackle some of the world's woes.
The three-day summit, scheduled when world leaders are in New York for the annual United Nations General Assembly, also featured appearances from U.S. President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger Mitt Romney, as well as Egypt's new Islamist president, Mohamed Mursi.
"I am convinced that cooperation, not conflict, will define this century," Clinton said.
The meeting is largely a networking opportunity for some of the world's power brokers to exchange ideas and forge partnerships. It also offers a chance for successful companies to highlight projects that demonstrate social responsibility.
On the opening day, Clinton asked Wal-Mart CEO Michael Duke if the company would consider opening a store in the Libyan capital of Tripoli. Duke noted the company has opened stores in some of the world's more troubled cities, but politely declined the suggestion.
The summit was also a family affair. Clinton introduced his wife, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who made remarks. And their daughter Chelsea, a board member, moderated a session called "The Case for Optimism in the 21st Century."
The idea for the summit came from Clinton's frustration with attending conferences while he was president that prompted no action. When the initiative began, corporations tended to show up and write checks to fund humanitarian programs. Now many see philanthropy in terms of investment opportunities.
The pledges will impact 22 million people, the Clinton initiative said. Some of the commitments took the form of donations.
In the Democratic Republic of Congo, Suntech Power Holdings and the GlobalECHO Foundation teamed up to install $250,000 worth of solar panels worth $250,000 at a hospital that treats victims of sexual violence.
"When you hear the stories of what they're dealing with, you can't not help them," said Andrew Beebe, Suntech's chief commercial officer.
(Reporting By Edith Honan; editing by Christopher Wilson)
Most Popular Slideshows
- Top 5 Richest Tennis Athletes
- Angelina Jolie & Brad Pitt Heads to Malta For New Movie After A Whirlwind French Wedding [PHOTOS]
- 2014 US Open Update (Day 4 - Men's Singles): Murray, Djokovic, Raonic and Isner Advance to 3rd Round [PHOTOS]
- Kate Middleton’s Mom Accused Of Being A Social Climber, Prince George Not Seen By Relatives
Join the Conversation
- Tourre on stand says email in SEC case 'not accurate'
- Syrian authorities blocking access to needy in Homs - Red Cross
- Faith in European Union at low ebb, EU poll says
- Former UBS banker gets 18 months, $1 million fine, for muni bid-rigging scheme
- U.S. judge halts challenges to Detroit's bankruptcy bid
- Apple iWatch is iPhone 6 Accessory on Sept 19 Release Date: 6 Confirmed Specs & Features
- iPhone 6 Release Date Update: 4.7-Inch Model Scores 65.8% In Screen-To-Size Ratio; A Surprise Entry Scales Top Spot [List Attached]
- Canada Vs Russia War Erupts Via Twitter on Russia-Not Russia Maps
- Product Recall Alert: Hewlett-Packard Pulls Out 6M Power Cords from US, Canada Over Fire Hazard Concerns, Australia Also Affected
- ISIS Wants $6.6M and Release of Aafia Siddiqui in Exchange of Head of Female US Humanitarian Aid Worker, 1st American Fighting for Jihadis Dead
- Ukraine Ceasefire Looks Remote As Putin Talks Tough At Meeting With Poroshenko
- Windows 9 To Include Interactive Live Tiles and Notification Center in Metro 2.0