Open Society Foundations-Armenia
The Open Society Foundations were founded by George Soros, one of the world’s foremost
philanthropists, who since 1984 has given away $14 billion of a personal fortune made in the
Open Society has supported individuals and organizations across the globe fighting for freedom
of expression, transparency, accountable government, and for societies that promote justice and
equality. This giving has often focused on those who face discrimination purely for who they are,
such as Europe’s Roma people, and others pushed to the margins of mainstream society.
Soros has experienced such intolerance first-hand. Born in Hungary in 1930, he lived through the
Nazi occupation, which resulted in the murder of over 500,000 Hungarian Jews. In 1947, as the
Communists took power, Soros left Budapest for London and then emigrated to the United States,
entering the world of finance and investments where he was to make his fortune.
Soros began his philanthropy in 1979, giving scholarships to black South Africans under apartheid.
In the 1980s, he helped promote the open exchange of ideas in Communist Hungary; after the fall of
the Berlin Wall, he sought to strengthen democratic practice and institutions across East and Central
With the Cold War over, he expanded his philanthropy to the United States, Africa, and Asia, supporting a
vast array of new efforts to create more accountable, transparent, and democratic societies.