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Thomson Reuters Foundation

I read with interest Monique Villa’s commentary piece about the Thomson Reuters Foundation [ Reshaping the business of social change]. She has certainly been an energetic Director and I am delighted as a former Chairman of the Foundation for 10 years that it goes from strength to strength in these difficult times. But she implies that when she took over the Reuters Foundation was all about writing grant cheques to pay for blankets, etc. In fact the Foundation since its origin in the early eighties followed the concept of leveraging the Company’s people and brand assets to deliver (often) unique philanthropic benefit around the world. The journalist fellowship schemes and young journalist training courses, as the years rolled by, also had a powerful impact on the Company’s standing with the press and often politicians in disadvantaged parts of the globe. Furthermore, in the nineties, under Steve Somerville, the Foundation pioneered AlertNet, the successful information service for NGOs involved in natural disasters. Big global impact again from leveraging core skills. So in nearly 30 years of the Foundation before the merger, its activities were innovative and effective and not restricted to the dispatch of blankets.
 
DAVID URE
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