John William Pope Foundation Guest Editorial
OUR MISSION & PHILOSOPHY
“Self-reliance, self-confidence, and integrity are the keys to success,” said John William Pope. “Endurance is also critical, and the responsibility for success lies on the shoulders of the individual.”
Those sentences reflect the philanthropic vision of the foundation that he created in 1986. The Pope Foundation supports organizations that work to advance free enterprise — the same system that allowed Variety Wholesalers to flourish — for future generations of Americans.
To achieve those ends, the Pope Foundation supports a network of organizations in North Carolina that advocate for free markets, limited government, individual responsibility, and government transparency. Beginning over two decades ago, the Pope Foundation invested in academic institutions to train the leaders of tomorrow; think tanks to translate ideas into an understandable form for policymakers and the public; grassroots organizations to help implement those ideas; and government watchdogs to ensure that taxpayer dollars are spent wisely.
Although critical, preserving our free-enterprise system is not sufficient. The Pope Foundation also believes in the importance of direct investment in communities through charitable giving. Wealth is a sacred trust and should be used to give people a hand up — not a hand out — so that they, in turn, can provide for themselves and their families.
According to a report (PDF) published by the NC Department of Public Instruction, 79,575, or 5.2 percent, of North Carolina's public school students attend a charter school in North Carolina this year.