The John William Pope Foundation’s philanthropic vision is rooted in improving the well-being of North Carolinians through the advancement of individual freedom and personal responsibility. To achieve this, the Foundation primarily concentrates on support to North Carolina-based non-profit organizations.  The Foundation’s giving is classified into four focus areas:

By meeting real human needs, in the short-term, through humanitarian aid, and in the long-term, through liberty-oriented organizations that foster a freer, more prosperous society, the Foundation is able to meet the needs of the whole person. When individual lives improve, society as a whole also improves.

“You’ve heard the old proverb that if you give a man a fish, you’ll feed him for a day, and if you teach him how to fish, you’ll feed him for a lifetime,” said Art Pope in a 2009 interview with writer John J. Miller. “A lot of philanthropy is about giving fish, which is very important. But these are short-term, direct measures that treat symptoms. You have to take it one step further,” said Pope.

“Teaching a man to fish presupposes that you have a right to fish and a right to keep the fish you catch. It assumes that you can take your fish to market and sell it, and use the proceeds to buy clothes for your kids. Too many philanthropists don’t even consider that in a just and functioning society, you must have individual liberty with property rights, the rule of law, and limited constitutional government.”

In keeping with its goal of providing the most good for the most number of people, the Pope Foundation’s operations are remarkably lean. Just 4% of the organization’s yearly budget goes to overhead; the rest goes directly to aiding fellow North Carolinians.

A legacy of generosity

Our specific areas of investment for the 2014-2015 fiscal year are below.  Our giving in FY 2014-15 totals $9,240,075.

National Policy
Acton Institute for the Study of Religion & Liberty $5,000
America’s Future Foundation $5,000
American Enterprise Institute $10,000
American Media Institute $25,000
Americans for Prosperity Foundation-National $100,000
Americans for Tax Reform Foundation $25,000
Atlas Economic Research Foundation $20,000
Capital Research Center $10,000
Cato Institute, The $50,175
Center for Equal Opportunity $5,000
Center for Organizational Research and Education (CORE) $10,000
Competitive Enterprise Institute $10,000
Documentary Foundation $15,000
Donors Trust $200,000
Foundation for Government Accountability $10,000
Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) $25,000
Franklin Center for Public Integrity $25,000
Free to Choose Network $5,000
Heritage Foundation $50,000
Independent Women’s Forum $35,000
Institute for Justice $50,000
Judicial Education Project $50,000
Lucy Burns Institute $35,000
Mercatus Center $110,000
National Center for Policy Analysis $25,000
Pacific Legal Foundation $10,000
Pacific Research Institute $5,000
Philanthropic Enterprise $10,000
Philanthropy Roundtable $25,000
Property and Environment Research Center (PERC) $10,000
Public Interest Legal Foundation $75,000
Reason Foundation, Inc. $125,000
State Policy Network $25,000
Washington Legal Foundation $10,000
TOTAL $1,205,175
North Carolina Policy
Americans for Prosperity Foundation-NC $200,000
BEST NC-NC Business Leaders for Education $15,000
Education NC $25,000
Institute of Political Leadership at UNCG $25,000
Jesse Helms Center Foundation $25,000
John Locke Foundation* $2,565,000
E.A. Morris Fellows (project of John Locke Foundation) $65,000
John William Pope Civitas Institute $1,080,000
NC Family Policy Council $200,000
NC Free Enterprise Foundation $25,000
NC Institute for Constitional Law $100,000
Pope Center for Higher Education Policy $542,800
TOTAL $4,867,800
Ashbrook Center at Ashland University $10,000
Asheville School* $225,000
Benjamin Rush Institute $10,000
Blessed Sacrament School $10,000
Carolina Liberty Foundation $10,000
Center for Scholarship Administration $10,000
Clemson Institute for the Study of Capitalism $25,000
Duke University Center for History of Political Economy $175,000
Federalist Society, The $50,000
Foundation for Economic Education $5,000
Fund for American Studies $25,000
Institute for Humane Studies* $655,000
Liberty & Law Institute $5,000
Manhattan Institute – Adam Smith Society $50,000
Neuse Christian Academy $2,500
Public Choice, Law and Economics Program at NC State University $85,200
Boy Scounts of America – Occoneechee Council Pope Eagle Scout Scholarship Program $40,000
Raleigh Charter High School $25,000
Ravenscroft School $25,000
Student Free Press Association $10,000
Philosophy, Politics and Economics Program at UNC Chapel Hill $50,000
Virginia Episcopal School $25,000
Wake Forest BB&T Center for Study of Capitalism $50,000
National Journalism Center (Young Americas Foundation) $15,000
TOTAL $1,592,700
ACTS of Vance County $5,000
Alliance Medical Ministry $20,000
Barium Springs Home for Children $10,000
CASA-Community Alternatives for Supportive Abodes $5,000
Children’s Homes Of Iredell County $5,000
CORRAL Riding Academy $5,000
Food Bank of Central & Eastern NC $10,000
Full Gospel Tabernacle Church $25,000
Vance County Girl Scouts of America Chapter $5,000
Godwin Presbyterian Church $5,000
Grayson Jockey Club Research Foundation $50,000
Green Chair Project $10,000
H. Leslie Perry Memorial Library of Vance County $15,000
Habitat for Humanity – Wake County $20,000
Helping Horse Therapeutic Riding Program $5,000
Henderson YMCA $5,000
Hope Reins $10,000
Transitions LifeCare $100,000
Inter-Faith Food Shuttle $10,000
Interfaith Prison Ministry for Women $10,000
Lifeline Outreach, Inc. $5,000
NC Youth Legislative Assembly Administration (YLA) $5,000
Occoneechee Council-Boy Scouts of America $10,000
Prevent Child Abuse NC $25,000
Raleigh Rescue Mission $10,000
Safe Haven for Cats $5,000
Salvation Army of Wake County $10,000
SECU Family House at UNC Hospitals $30,000
Shepherd’s Table Soup Kitchen $14,400
StepUp Ministries $50,000
Thoroughbred Charities of America $10,000
Thoroughbred Racing Fan Association (Thorofan) $5,000
Triangle Special Hockey Association $5,000
UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center* $400,000
UNC Horizons $25,000
United Way of Vance County $15,000
Urban Ministries of Wake County $10,000
Vance County Historical Society $5,000
Veterans Leadership Council of NC – CARES $20,000
White Memorial Presbyterian Church* $300,000
White Oak Baptist-Elizabethtown $5,000
YMCA of the Triangle Area $5,000
TOTAL $1,299,400
Artspace $5,000
Carolina Ballet* $135,000
Community Music School $5,000
Kidznotes $10,000
NC Museum of Art $10,000
NC Opera Company $15,000
NC Symphony, The $25,000
NC Theatre $35,000
Performance Edge $5,000
Raleigh Fine Arts Society $25,000
Raleigh Little Theater $5,000
TOTAL $275,000
*Indicates support of multiple programs/initiatives within the organization.