BackgroundMr. Charles F. Feeney, the co-founder of Duty Free Shoppers Group, Ltd. (DFS), established The Atlantic Foundation, the first of The Atlantic Philanthropies, in 1982. The Atlantic Philanthropies sold their holdings in DFS to LVMH, Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, in 1996. Today, The Atlantic Philanthropies consist of The Atlantic Foundation and The Atlantic Trust, both domiciled in Bermuda; several smaller philanthropies based variously in Bermuda, UK, Ireland, and the US; and regional service companies that select and evaluate potential grant recipients, oversee grants once awarded, and manage the endowment.
MissionTo bring about lasting changes that will improve the lives of disadvantaged and vulnerable people.
Geographic focusAustralia, Bermuda, Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, South Africa, the United States and Vietnam
Programme areasAtlantic concentrates its grantmaking in seven countries and focuses on four critical social issues, and additionally makes Founding Chairman grants:
• Children and youth
• Population health
• Reconciliation and human rights
• Founding Chairman grants
Focuses on key issues confronting older adults in each country (Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and the United States), including poverty, gender, race, religion, failing health and geographic isolation. The programme engages a range of partners, including older adults themselves, particularly those with low incomes and chronic illness.To address these challenges, the Ageing Programme focuses on three complimentary areas:
• Improving economic and health security through effective advocacy and policy strategies
• Strengthening the voice and social action of older people for social justice
• Building a more enduring capacity of the age sector
Children and Youth
Seeks to create and support a network of organisations with an enhanced ability to advocate for children, while also delivering specific programme and policy reforms in the short run that will improve the lives of those children and youth who are most in need. The Children & Youth Programme is active in Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and the United States. To support this strategic vision and advance the interests of children, the Children & Youth Programme invests in systemic but focused efforts in each country in which it is active to:
• Build capacity of organisations at the local, regional and national levels
• Strengthen leadership, build networks, unite organisations across issues and regions, and encourage community engagement on behalf of the most vulnerable children
• Engage the youth advocacy field, including youth, parents and communities, to advance concrete policy changes
To develop and strengthen the primary health care systems in the countries in which it is active, Atlantic works in partnership with schools of public health, governments, other foundations, communities, professional associations and non-profit organisations. Specifically, the Population Health Programme supports efforts to:
• Educate, train and retain clinical, public health and other allied health professionals to improve the delivery of primary care
• Introduce, evaluate and replicate model programmes for training health professionals, improving clinical care to meet standards of best practice, and delivering care effectively
• Invest in physical and digital infrastructure to facilitate the delivery of quality primary care
• Encourage grassroots advocacy for those who suffer from current inequities in health services and health outcomes
Reconciliation and human rights
Supports work that mobilises communities and develops effective leadership within them; builds strong, sustainable organisations that work together to advocate for change; secures legal gains that advance rights; and strengthens the culture of rights and the capacity of people at the margins to secure them. In each country (Northern Ireland, South Africa, Republic of Ireland and the US), Atlantic works to protect the rights of immigrants. In addition, it also has specific priorities in each country, such as protecting people with disabilities in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, integrating education in Northern Ireland, protecting the Constitution and advancing the rights of the rural poor in South Africa, and promoting racial justice, seeking to end the death penalty and restoring civil liberties and the rule of law in the United States.
Founding Chairman grants
Founding Chairman, Charles "Chuck" Feeney, proposes grants to the Board that better the lives of people in a variety of countries. These grants generally pertain to the expansion, usually through co-financing, of building projects for higher education and medical research facilities. A focus of Mr. Feeney's support is to encourage medical researchers and university leaders at Atlantic-supported institutions in Australia, the United States and Vietnam to collaborate on research in an effort to develop biomedical breakthroughs greater than any single institution can achieve alone. The ultimate goal is to generate sustainable scientific progress and improve health care for disadvantaged and vulnerable people.