Founder's Projects

Improving Communities and the Quality of Life Worldwide

Bloomberg Philanthropies takes on additional, unique projects for which Mike Bloomberg has a special passion. These projects include spurring women’s economic development in Africa and supporting his alma mater, Johns Hopkins, by funding research on vital public health issues, scholarships, and infrastructure that supports students and faculty.

The Women's Economic Development Initiative

Creating Economic Opportunity for Women and Their Families Through Training

A woman attends a class at the Women's Opportunity Center

Increasing economic opportunities for women in Rwanda and Congo

Working with government, nonprofit, and for-profit partners, Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Women’s Economic Development Initiative provides women with training in basic knowledge and skills, including rights, literacy, numeracy, nutrition, and health care. In the third month of training, women receive an individualized program plan through which they select a yearlong vocational track.

  • More than 140,000 women have been trained and educated in business, increasing their incomes by 111%.
  • Their greater economic opportunities have positively impacted close to a half million of their children and family members.
  • More than 4,000 women farmers are growing and exporting high-quality coffee from crop to cup to international distributors. Through a system of profit-sharing, these women use the proceeds to invest in their businesses and communities.
  • The Rwanda Coffee Institute shipped more than 90,000 pounds of coffee to international roasters. This high export volume signals that the women enrolled in this initiative are now active participants in the global market. Further, their coffee brand, Question Coffee, is distributed through international retailers and roasters.

In addition, Bloomberg Philanthropies and the King Baudouin Foundation joined to support the Foundation Center to launch a free data portal called Equal Footing. It organizes data around philanthropic efforts in the countries of Burundi, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Bolstering Johns Hopkins University’s Public Health Research Capabilities With More Staff, Students, and Infrastructure

Vice President Joe Biden joins medical students at Johns Hopkins at the announcement of the establishment of the Bloomberg~Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy

Since graduating from the University in 1964, Mike Bloomberg has contributed more than $1 billion to Johns Hopkins University for projects and initiatives, including the top-ranked school of public health that bears his name, the Malaria Research Institute, and thousands of scholarships to ensure the best and brightest students can attend the University. Johns Hopkins University has added 20 highly accomplished faculty members as Bloomberg Distinguished Professors. Another 30 positions will be created for interdisciplinary professorships to galvanize people, resources, research and educational opportunities to address major world problems.

Recently, Mike Bloomberg, philanthropist Sydney Kimmel and others contributed $125 million to create the Bloomberg~Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy. Vice President Joe Biden, 100 medical students, doctors and cancer survivors joined together for the center’s launch. Immunotherapy, which is a central element of the Obama administration’s new moonshot to cure cancer, has the potential to cure and end all forms of cancer, making it one of the most promising avenues of cancer research today.