One of the oldest sayings about charity captures the guiding philosophy of the John William Pope Foundation in our humanitarian work: “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”
Nearly 10 percent of residents in Wake County, the seat for the state capital of Raleigh, remain below the poverty level. In North Carolina as a whole, that figure jumps to over 15 percent. The Pope Foundation believes that individual initiative — not government intervention or welfare — is the key to reducing poverty and bringing prosperity to all North Carolinians.
But charity should be more than addressing an immediate need. When the disadvantaged learn virtues and skills that allow them to transition out of poverty and dependence, all of society benefits. As citizens’ economic security improves, they are more likely to take an active role in bettering themselves and their families, augmenting their community.
The Foundation’s support for humanitarian causes is borne out of our belief that, given the right tools, the disadvantaged can achieve economic and personal stability. Toward that end, the Foundation has donated millions to humanitarian causes since our founding in 1986, primarily in Wake County and adjacent regions.
Four key principles guide the Foundation in our humanitarian work:
- Private institutions, not the government, should be the first responders in creating an economic and cultural safety net to meet individuals’ needs.
- Improving the civic and economic welfare of individuals is the obligation and privilege of other individuals operating in a free society.
- Families, churches, and neighborhoods are the pillars of our democracy. Supporting these institutions strengthens the ties that bind these United States.
- A strong work ethic, sense of personal responsibility, and emphasis on virtue are indispensable underpinnings of the American experiment.
The organizations that receive grants from the Pope Foundation in the humanitarian area must reflect these core values.
The Foundation invests in dozens of organizations and ministries that help people become self-sustaining, self-reliant individuals. Gifts to humanitarian and ministry causes have totaled over $8 million during the last 25 years. Examples of the organizations that we support include:
- Hospice of Wake County Foundation
- Barium Springs Home for Children
- Prevent Child Abuse North Carolina
- American Red Cross, Triangle Area Chapter
- StepUp Ministry
- Habitat for Humanity of Wake County
- Raleigh Rescue Mission
- Alliance Medical Ministry
How to Apply
Click here for information on the application process.
Check out our grantee Spotlights
Providing Health Care for the Working Poor One of the most controversial political issues in modern America is health care. Alliance Medical Ministry, a faith-led nonprofit in Wake County, North Carolina, is providing solutions to the health care crisis without the intervention of the federal government. The idea behind Alliance is simple: Bring together a community [...]Learn More & Get Involved
Walk into Dr. Charles Mann’s office and your attention is immediately drawn to the walls, covered with memorabilia from Bolivia. The mementos, gained decades ago when Dr. Mann took medical missionary trips to the South American country, reflect the birth of his long-term mission of ensuring that low-income workers in the United States have access [...]Learn More & Get Involved
Barbara Gotay’s face lights up when you ask her about homeownership. “That was my biggest dream, to have a home,” she said. “Not for me, but for my kids. That’s the future for them.” It’s a future that wouldn’t have been possible without Barbara’s local chapter of Habitat for Humanity, a charitable nonprofit that helps [...]Learn More & Get Involved
Crime in the Long Acres neighborhood was bad, and getting worse by the day. Drug dealers walked the streets, abandoned houses abounded, and decay was setting in.Learn More & Get Involved
Fulfilling Dreams for Special-Needs Children For many developmentally challenged youngsters, a miracle is waiting on a 13-acre farm north of Raleigh: a horse. Time on horseback can be life changing for special-needs children. Some children speak their first words while riding. Directing a powerful animal like a horse boosts confidence, improves coordination, and teaches valuable [...]Learn More & Get Involved
Celebrating Life in Our Community Similar to most western nations, the United States is expected to see a significant increase in its older adult population in the coming decades. With that fact of life comes a bevy of needed services. One of those is compassionate end-of-life care. In Hospice of Wake County, North Carolina’s capital [...]Learn More & Get Involved
It took five businessmen at a church in Charlotte, North Carolina, to set Juan Nelson on the path to new life. That was no easy task: Juan had just arrived in the Queen City seeking recovery from a nagging drug addiction. His criminal record scared away potential employers. But after he joined a ministry geared [...]Learn More & Get Involved
The Pope Eagle Scout Scholarship paves the way for today’s promising youngsters to become the leaders of tomorrow.Learn More & Get Involved
Robert came to the Raleigh Rescue Mission with a long list of medical problems: prostate cancer, lupus, a knee injury, and a hernia. At the time, he had been living on the streets of downtown Raleigh for five years, destitute and alone.Learn More & Get Involved
Providing a Home for Seriously Ill Patients Cancer. It’s a word that strikes fear into thousands of hearts each day in the United States. For many families, this dreadful illness arrives with little warning, cutting short the lives of their loved ones. But for those suffering through painful treatments at UNC Hospitals in the Triangle [...]Learn More & Get Involved
StepUp Ministry is breaking the poverty cycle in North Carolina through a hand up, not a handout.Learn More & Get Involved