Adelsons Pledge $70 Million to Birthright Israel

Adelsons Pledge $70 Million to Birthright Israel

Las Vegas Sands Corp. chair Sheldon Adelson and his wife, Miriam, have pledged $70 million to the Birthright Israel Foundation to fund trips to Israel for young Jewish adults, Bloomberg reports.

Since 2000, Birthright Israel has sponsored free ten-day "heritage trips" to Israel for six hundred thousand Jewish adults between the ages of 18 and 32. The latest gift from the couple boosts their total contribution to the organization to $410 million. In recognition of their longstanding support, the couple received the "Guardians of the Jewish Future" award from Birthright Israel co-founders Charles Bronfman and Michael Steinhardt.

"Before Israel was founded, my father always said he wished there was a place where Jewish people could live," said Sheldon Adelson, the world’s twentieth-richest person, as calculated by the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. "He always wanted to go, but by the time I could send him, he said he was too old and too sick. I don’t want any kid to say they were too old or too sick to visit Israel."