Former U.S. President Bill Clinton said today he has collected 246 pledges for more than $2.5 billion to alleviate poverty in the developing world and help women and girls.
Among the pledges made at the sixth annual gathering of the Clinton Global Initiative in New York was a promise by the U.S.- based aid group Americares to build a safe haven for 1,000 adolescent girls in earthquake-ravaged Haiti, to protect them from sexual assault.
“This is a huge deal,” Clinton said as he opened the event, which coincides with a gathering of world leaders at the United Nations General Assembly.
Eric Schmidt, chief executive officer of Google Inc., which runs the most popular Internet search engine and the video- sharing site YouTube, pledged $1 million to help Pakistan recover from the floods that devastated the country last month.
The donation from the Mountain View, California-based company includes a Web-based computer application that helps rescuers find people missing in natural disasters.
Procter & Gamble Co., the world’s largest consumer products company, will distribute 2 billion packets of its water purification product Pur for free in developing countries, CEO Bob McDonald said on stage.
Clinton said the packets from the Cincinnati-based manufacturer would save at least one life every hour.
“We think it’s good business as well as good philanthropy,” McDonald said. “Consumers around the world today want to know what they are buying into when they spend dollars to buy our products.”
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