I celebrate the inspiration, innovation, initiative and generosity of the hundreds of millions of people throughout the world who are participating in the effort to promote health, wealth, goodwill and peace.

No doubt there will be cynics and sceptics who doubt that the current shift in values will be enough to drive fundamental transformation  in individuals, communities, organisations and societies.  I share with you a few examples of some of the fabulous global initiatives, from large philanthropic foundations  to micro-finance entrepreneurs, that are actively promoting transformation in our lifetime:

Living Values Education

“In confronting the many challenges that the future holds in store, humankind sees in education an indispensable asset in its attempt to attain the ideals of peace, freedom and social justice. The Commission does not see education as a miracle cure or a magic formula opening the door to a world in which all ideals will be attained, but as one of the principal means available to foster a deeper and more harmonious form of human development and thereby to reduce poverty, exclusion, ignorance, oppression and war.” “Learning: The Treasure Within”,  UNESCO Commission

Central Asia Institute

“Central Asia Institute’s mission is to promote and support community-based education, especially for girls, in remote regions of Afghanistan and Pakistan. The philosophy is to empower the local people through their own initiative. As of 2009, Central Asia Institute has successfully established 130 schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan, which provide (or have provided) education to over 51,000 students, with a emphasis on girls’ education. Over the first decade of Central Asia Institute’s evolution, our programs and projects expanded to several regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan with an emphasis on education, health issues, environment and cultural preservation.”

Pennies for Peace

“Pennies for Peace, an international service-learning program with tens of thousands of participants around the globe. Pennies for Peace gives you the tools to open your world and empower communities through education in Pakistan and Afghanistan!” … “While a penny is virtually worthless, in impoverished countries a penny buys a pencil and opens the door to literacy.”

NOAH Foundation

“Unlocking the Potential of the “Seventh Continent”

“The creation of a world without poverty can be achieved within our lifetime. Social business has the power not only to lift people out of poverty, but to give everyone the opportunity to become a successful business entrepreneur in their own right.”

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

“Guided by the belief that every life has equal value, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation works to help all people lead healthy, productive lives. In developing countries, we focus on improving people’s health and giving them the chance to lift themselves out of hunger and extreme poverty. In the United States, we seek to ensure that all people—especially those with the fewest resources—have access to the opportunities they need to succeed in school and life.”

Stand Up Against Poverty

In October 2009 : “173,045,325 citizens gathered at over 3,000 events in more than 120 countries, demanding that their governments eradicate extreme poverty and achieve the Millennium Development Goals. “Stand Up, Take Action, End Poverty Now!”, has been certified by Guinness World Records as a new world record and remains the largest mobilization of human beings in recorded history. Thank you for Standing with us!”

Erasmus Centre of Behavioural Ethics

“The Erasmus Centre of Behavioural Ethics (ECBE) fosters and promotes fundamental (social) psychological research in behavioural ethics that has implications for a wide variety of fields such as management, law, and social sciences in general. The centre aims to address questions related to understanding how, for example, it is possible that good people can show bad behaviours, how concerns about justice and morality influence people’s decisions within dyads and groups, which motives underlie ethical leadership, … “

The MBA Oath

“The oath is a voluntary pledge for graduating MBAs and current MBAs to “create value responsibly and ethically.” We  intend to begin a widespread movement of MBAs who aim to lead in the interests of the greater good and who have committed to living out the principles articulated in the oath.”

You can read the Oath here.

Grameen Foundation

“At Grameen Foundation our goal is simple – we want to see poor people, especially the poorest and those living in harder to reach areas, have access to microfinance and technology and as a result of access to these services, move themselves out of poverty.  We envision a world where the poor have broken the generational chain of poverty and lead lives of respect, dignity and opportunity.”


“betterplace connects.
People, in need of support, meet others, who want to help. One to one. Direct. Worldwide.”


“Google.org has committed over $100 million in grants and investments. ”


“Kiva’s mission is to connect people through lending for the sake of alleviating poverty.

Kiva is the world’s first person-to-person micro-lending website, empowering individuals to lend to unique entrepreneurs around the globe.”

The Authenticity Project

“In the ongoing effort to help lift people out of poverty, the role of women and girls is taking center stage. … The bottom line is, the better you understand yourself, the better you understand your world. This has been taught since the beginning of time. Mahatma Gandhi knew that it was about inspiring the individual. So did Martin Luther King, Jr. When the individual is inspired, the economics change.”


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