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Dear Fools,

I can understand your disappointment and respect those of you who have decided already to take your donations elsewhere. It was a difficult decision for us to make but in the end, we were swayed by a single word: Impact.

The Foolanthropy Program, now ten years old, has been a remarkable success, raising millions of dollars and bringing to light a number of amazing charitable organizations. The people we've met through these experiences, what we've learned about the world, and the ways that we've helped people around globe are remarkable. It is quite possible that, looking back 50 years from now, the greatest thing The Motley Fool community achieved came through its Foolanthropy work.

What we realized, in reviewing our past and present, is that we weren't able to get traction with any organization. The nominees changed from year to year. Further, the focuses of the charities fell outside are areas of expertise. If you had the opportunity to read Mr. Buffett's letter to his son, after gifting his son's charity with Berkshire stock, you'll know of what we speak. Mr. Buffett advised that you should put your capital and your charitable efforts where you have keen insights and where you uniquely can make a difference in the world.

We together at The Motley Fool represent the largest aggregation of investing minds, insights, experience, and potential anywhere in the world. If you step back and ponder that, it's an amazing truth. We are all clicking through and contributing to The World's Greatest Investment Community. To not use that community to do good for the world based on our keen insights and focused on where we uniquely can make a difference seemed and seems like an oversight to us.

It may take awhile for this to click, but when Foolanthropy is moving at full speed in this arena, we should be able to mobilize more people, raise more money, change more lives for the better, and advocate more for charitable giving than any organization in this field. Foolanthropy of the future holds out the potential for teams of Fools volunteering together in locations around the country and around the world; it opens the door on deeper partnerships with non-profits; it has the potential to change the world for the better -- with high impact -- more than any of us can imagine. There were possibilities just not available to us in a Foolanthropy approach with charities spanning all fields, rotating from one year to the next.

And so, if you are not signed up to contribute through Foolanthropy this year, I hope you'll keep the door open on future years. And what you may find in the years ahead are ways to contribute time and knowledge, face-to-face and online, in ways that may well go beyond capital contributions. I hope you'll at least give us the chance to prove that we can do something remarkable and worthy of your participation in the years ahead.


Tom Gardner, Fool
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