Bill Gates made one of the largest fortunes that the world has ever seen on the back of technology from his company Microsoft. Gates stepped down from Microsoft to focus on the foundation that he and his wife founded with their personal fortune.
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has so far handed out billions in funding to help improve the lives and technology used for education around the world. In December 2009, the foundation pledged $3.4 million for libraries in the U.S. to help them accelerate the support and adoption of broadband in libraries.
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has now pledged $10 billion to increase the number of vaccines that are available to children around the world. The huge amount of funds is committed over the next ten years to help develop and deliver new vaccines for the world’s poor countries. The funds will also be used to pay for research into new vaccines.
Increased vaccine availability could help save more than 8 million children by 2020 according to the foundation, but funding gaps still exist. Despite the huge amount of money pledged by the foundation, the call for more private and government investment in vaccines is being made.
“We must make this the decade of vaccines,” said Bill Gates. “Vaccines already save and improve millions of lives in developing countries. Innovation will make it possible to save more children than ever before.”
Melinda Gates said, “Vaccines are a miracle—with just a few doses, they can prevent deadly diseases for a lifetime. We’ve made vaccines our number-one priority at the Gates Foundation because we’ve seen firsthand their incredible impact on children’s lives.”
The $10 billion in new funding for vaccines and vaccine research pledged by the foundation was in addition to the $4.5 billion that the Gates Foundation has already committed to the cause.
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