Effective Altruism in practice makes a monumental shift in society. 2021 was the biggest year yet and the report on where donations that I helped contribute towards went and how they changed the lives of those across the globe are remarkable to say the least. With careful consideration a company GiveWell who was featured in the book "The most good you can do" stuck out from the crowd for donors and thus has been one of my main targets for yearly donations in practicing effective altruism.
4th quarter of 2021 donations went to the following initiatives:
Helen Keller International's vitamin A supplementation program
Malaria Consortium's seasonal malaria chemoprevention program
Sightsavers' deworming program
Funds allocated through donations and grants like mine helped to fill the highest priority funding needs when it was time to decide how to allocate the funds. My hope is that these types of gifts that are an integral part of the impact that the grants start to catalyze others to step up and contribute to causes that make the world a better place versus causes that make their instagram look like they are living in a better place.
So what changes did Richart Ruddie's Donation Contribute Towards?
- How about saving the lives of 8,400 people? Yes, thats eight thousand four hundred people through the distribution of long-lasting antimalarial nets, seasonal chemoprevention to protect against malaria, provision of vitamin A supplements to children, and incentives provided to caregivers for vaccinating their infants
- So how do you top that number? You contribute towards a program that focuses on change and not running a not for profit who also provides close to 17 million children with life-improving treatment for parasitic worm infections
Making donations to places so far away that most people couldn't even fathom heading towards that direction. Most will never go and visit sub sahara Africa and thats okay because you don't need to see those you donate to in order to substantially impact their lives. Here is a map of countries impacted directly a continent away from us here in America.
So whats the breakdown of the organizations receiving the funds and what do they specialize in? Glad you asked along with the total allocation
Total allocation: $22.2 million
Where these funds will be used: Burkina Faso, Chad, Nigeria, and Togo
Expected lives saved: 5,200
Intervention: Seasonal malaria chemoprevention to prevent malaria, which disproportionately kills children under five in sub-Saharan Africa.
Total allocation: $9.4 million
Where these funds will be used: Nigeria
Expected lives saved: 2,100
Intervention: Conditional cash transfers to encourage caregivers to immunize their children against potentially deadly but preventable diseases, in a part of the world where vaccination rates are low.
Total allocation: $7.8 million
Where these funds will be used: Nigeria, Cameroon
Expected treatments delivered: About 9.6 million across both countries
Intervention: Mass deworming treatments for children, which we believe may have a significant effect on their future income and subtler benefits to their overall health.
Deworm the World Initiative
Total allocation: $4.8 million
Where these funds will be used: Kenya, Nigeria, and Pakistan
Expected treatments delivered: About 7 million across all three countries
Intervention: Mass deworming treatments.
Against Malaria Foundation
Total allocation: $3.4 million
Where these funds will be used: Nigeria
Expected lives saved: 570
Intervention: Long-lasting insecticide-treated nets (LLINs) to protect against malaria-carrying mosquitoes.
Helen Keller International
Total allocation: $1.4 million
Where these funds may be used: Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Guinea, Kenya, Mali, Niger, and Nigeria
Expected lives saved: 600
Intervention: Vitamin A supplementation (VAS) to prevent stunting, anemia, blindness, and death in young children.
I hope that in 2022 and beyond that you consider pledging more of your income towards causes that significantly impact the bulk of a population. Follow the footsteps of other major donors like Sam Bankman who set an example for philanthropy and the lack of living lavishly so others can live better.
- See a list of past distributions from the Maximum Impact Fund here. The largest distribution prior to this one was of funds received in Q4 2020, totaling $25.9 million.
- October through December 2021.
- See this spreadsheet, rows labeled "MIF Q4 2021," for a list of all grants made with Q4 2021 Maximum Impact Fund donations and their expected outcomes. Note that these outcome estimates are specific to these grants, and the cost-effectiveness of other grants to these top charities may be higher or lower. More information about the cost-effectiveness of Maximum Impact Fund grants we've made in the past can be found here.
- "The percentage of total malaria deaths in children aged under 5 years reduced from 87% in 2000 to 77% in 2020.... About 96% of malaria deaths globally were in 29 countries. Six countries – Nigeria (27%), the Democratic Republic of the Congo (12%), Uganda (5%), Mozambique (4%), Angola (3%) and Burkina Faso (3%) – accounted for just over half of all malaria deaths globally in 2020." WHO, World Malaria Report 2021, p. xvi
- In 2019, 43% of Nigerian infants did not get the full set of DTP, PCV, and HiB vaccines, and 33% did not get the BCG vaccine (see Our World in Data, Global vaccination coverage, Nigeria, 2019). New Incentives' program directly incentivizes all of these vaccines; see our report on New Incentives' program for more.
- See "What are the benefits of mass deworming?" in our report on combination deworming programs such as those implemented by Sightsavers and Deworm the World.
- See the "In a nutshell" section of our report on mass distribution of LLINs: "There is strong evidence that when large numbers of people use LLINs to protect themselves while sleeping, the burden of malaria can be reduced, resulting in a reduction in child mortality among other benefits."
- From our review of Helen Keller International's program: "Vitamin A deficiency (VAD) can cause stunting, anemia, xerophthalmia (dry eyes, which can lead to blindness), increased severity of infections, and death.... Helen Keller supports countries' VAS programs for preschool-aged children by providing technical assistance, engaging in advocacy, and contributing funding to governments for implementing the programs."
- You can read more about GiveWell’s plans to roll over a portion of 2021 funds into 2022 here.