Seattle: The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has announced that it will spend USD 8.3 billion in 2023 in its continued efforts to fight poverty, disease, and inequality. CEO of the foundation Mark Suzmanin his annual letter on Monday, shared examples of how the foundation uses its resources, voice, and convening power to call attention to and help find solutions for various problems.
“The budget—the largest in the foundation’s history—is a response to multiple crises that threaten to stall or reverse global progress on the Sustainable Development Goals since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. These included war, economic turmoil, climate-related disastersand large decreases in vaccinations for preventable infectious diseases, all of which have taken a significant toll on the world’s poorest people,” said Suzman’s letter.
The board of trustees’ approval of the 2023’s budget, Suzman said, puts the foundation on track to meet its commitment to reach an annual payout of USD billion by 2026, which represents a 15 percent increase over the 2022 forecasted payout.
“This is the toughest period for global health and development in recent memory, but in some ways, it’s also the reason we exist,” Suzman said. “To help meet the great needs ahead, we are doubling down on our commitment to our core mission: ensuring everyone can live a healthy and productive life. .”
In his annual letter, Suzman also addressed questions about the scale of the foundation’s influence and its access to global leaders. Using examples from the foundation’s work on climate adaptation, malaria, and US education, he detailed how the foundation advocates for solutions, brings diverse voices to decision-making tables and fills gaps.
He also discussed the role the foundation plays in setting global health and development priorities.
“The foundation doesn’t set the world’s agenda–we respond to it,” Suzman said, referring to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
“Our role is to ensure that decision-makers–be the school board members or cassava growers or health ministers–have the best possible options to choose from and the best possible data to inform their decisions,” Suzman said, adding that where there’s a solution that can improve livelihoods and save lives, the foundation will persistently advocate for it.