Published: March 18, 2003
Philanthropist Robert Wilson Issues $50 Million Challenge Grant To World Monumnets Fund
NEW YORK CITY – Noted philanthropist Robert W. Wilson has issued a $50 million challenge to the New York City-based World Monuments Fund (WMF), a private nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation of historic monuments worldwide. Wilson’s commitment provides significant funding for WMF’s many projects, including those on the World Monument Watch List of 100 Most Endangered Sites, and induces individuals, foundations, and governments outside the United States to contribute to preservation. To date, more than $10 million in WMF funding from the Wilson Challenge has leveraged more than $22 million in additional contributions from 35 countries.
The challenge continues Wilson’s commitment to the World Monuments Fund, of which he has been a trustee since 1990. He has been by far the largest single donor in the organization’s history. When fully met, the Wilson challenge monies, together with international matching funds, will exceed $100 million.
WMF brings public and private support together through a program of advocacy, fieldwork, technical assistance, and other activities to safeguard imperiled monuments and works of art. One of the organization’s most powerful tools is the World Monuments Watch program and its biennial List of 100 Most Endangered Sites, which identifies important sites worldwide that are in need of immediate aid and helps to ensure their rescue.
WMF projects have included the vast Hindu-Buddhist temple complex in Angkor, Cambodia; the Easter Island sculptures; a historic Jewish synagogue in Krakow, Poland; a mosque in Ghana; the dome of the Hôtel des Invalides in Paris; the stone lions of the New York Public Library; the adobe churches of New Mexico; the Alvar Aalto-designed Viipuri Library in Russia and more than 25 sites in Venice.
For information, 646-424-9594 or visit www.worldmonuments.org.
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