He’s charmed us, broken our hearts, and made us terrified of the financial sector, but Leonardo DiCaprio’s most impressive work is done off-screen. In 1998, fresh off the success of Titanic, DiCaprio started the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, dedicated to “protecting the world’s last wild places.” A passionate conservationist, DiCaprio created the foundation as a way to interact with charities and conservationist organizations in a more productive way than simply donating money. Currently they are involved in more than 70 projects spanning the globe.
Recently, DiCaprio spoke to the UN about the importance of protecting the environment, along with announcing another donation of 15 million dollars to be used for grants. The grants will be allocated across the world.
The foundation announced the organizations that will be receiving grants on their website. Among those receiving grants are programs such as,
- Amazon Watch
- California Wolf Center: Pacific Wolf Coalition
- Digital Democracy
- International Fund for Animal Welfare
- National Geographic: Pristine Seas
- Natural Resources Defense Council
- World Wildlife Fund
And that is just a few of the 27 organizations the foundation is helping. DiCaprio doesn’t simply donate either. He also owns an island that he is using as an eco-conscious resort and educational opportunity (guests receive mandatory ecology orientation before visiting), and continually uses his monumental influence on social media to promote change and bring attention to causes he believes in.
It’s easy to be jaded about celebrities getting up on a soap box for causes, but seeing DiCaprio’s unwavering devotion to the cause of saving our planet over the last 17 years is nothing short of awe-inspiring. There is little doubt that he will help effect change in people’s outlook on the environment. He deserves more accolades for his work for the planet than he gets for his career.Whizzco