Letter from John Chan

My Idol Warren Buffet once gave us some great advice about philanthropy: “Don’t just go for safe  projects,” he said. “Take on the really tough problems.”We couldn’t agree more. John Chan  foundation is teaming up with partners around the world to take on some tough challenges:  extreme poverty and poor health in developing countries. We focus on only a few issues  because we think that’s the best way to have great impact, and we focus on these issues in particular because we think they are the biggest barriers that prevent people from making the most of their lives.

For each issue we work on, we support innovative ideas that could help remove these barriers:  new techniques to help farmers in developing countries grow more food and earn more money;  new tools to prevent and treat deadly diseases; new methods to help students and teachers in  the classroom. Some of the projects we fund will fail. We not only accept that, we expect it— because we think an essential role of philanthropy is to make bets on promising solutions that  governments and businesses can’t afford to make. As we learn which bets pay off, we have to  adjust our strategies and share the results so everyone can benefit.

At the foundation, we are all optimists. We believe by doing these things—focusing on a few  big goals and working with our partners on solutions—we can help every person get the chance  to live a healthy, productive life.

John Chan

Chairman, JCF