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Philanthropies, formerly LDS Philanthropies, is a department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) and is responsible for facilitating donations to humanitarian and education initiatives.[1] The humanitarian arm of the organization is Latter-day Saint Charities (LDS Charities). As a church department, Philanthropies operates under the direction of the Presiding Bishopric

LDS Philanthropies logo.svg
FoundedApril 29, 1955 (1955-04-29)
FounderThe Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Coordinates40°15′12″N 111°39′29″W / 40.253400°N 111.658055°W / 40.253400; -111.658055Coordinates: 40°15′12″N 111°39′29″W / 40.253400°N 111.658055°W / 40.253400; -111.658055
Key people
Tanise Chung-Hoon, Director
Formerly called
LDS Philanthropies (2005-2018)
LDS Foundation (1982-2005)
The Development Office (1973-1982)
Church Education Development Office (1971-1973)
BYU Destiny Fund (1955-1971)



Founded in 1955, Philanthropies has evolved in both purpose and brand over the intervening 65 years. Initially called the BYU Destiny Fund it became the Church Education Development Office in 1971, but then quickly changed to The Development Office in 1973. The name changed to the LDS Foundation in 1982 and then LDS Philanthropies in 2005.[2] The current name The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints – Philanthropies, was changed in 2019 as part of a focus by the LDS Church to move away from the monikers 'LDS' and 'Mormon'.[3][4]

N. Eldon Tanner initially created a task force to address philanthropic issues in the LDS Church and named Donald T. Nelson as the first director. The organization reported to the Church Commissioner of Education until 1980 when it began reporting directly to the First Quorum of the Seventy and Ronald E. Poelman, a general authority of the church. In 1981, Philanthropies began reporting indirectly to the Presiding Bishopric's office until 1986 when LDS Foundation was asked to report directly to the Presiding Bishop, Victor L. Brown. An advisory board was approved February 5, 2000 to supervise funds. The church built offices in Provo, Utah to house LDS Philanthropies. The building was dedicated by Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor in the church's First Presidency on May 16, 2008.[5]

Philanthropic givingEdit

While welfare programs within the LDS Church funded by fast offerings are generally for members, humanitarian donations are used to provide assistance in countries around the world to people without regard to religion or race. These donations provide assistance to victims of natural disasters, including aid such as hygiene kits, food and water, and blankets. Current humanitarian projects include neonatal resuscitation training, wheelchair placement, eye surgery initiatives to help the blind, well drilling projects for water sources, and other health and wellness projects.

One hundred percent of all donations are used to help the needy and overhead for administering aid is paid from the church's general funds. Humanitarian aid deliveries are supervised by service missionaries who live and serve in countries around the world. In some parts of the world their efforts are best known by the volunteers in yellow shirts that say Mormon Helping Hands.

Donations to Philanthropies are used by the LDS Church and its affiliated entities including: Brigham Young University, BYU-Hawaii, BYU-Idaho, BYU-Pathway Worldwide, LDS Business College, along with Humanitarian Services, missionary and family history efforts.

Donations to education efforts help provide scholarships and create mentored learning opportunities for students from around the world.[6] For example, BYU-Hawaii helps students from the Pacific Islands and Asia. The Perpetual Education Fund provides repayable loans for students in developing nations to obtain an education. When graduates of the program become employed they repay the loan and the money is used to replenish the endowment.

Latter-day Saint CharitiesEdit

Sponsors relief and development projects in 195 countries and is largely run with volunteer labor.[7] Sharon Eubank is the current director. Latter-day Saint Charities operates both independently and in cooperation with other charitable organizations and governments including American Red Cross, Catholic Relief Services, Muslim Aid, Southern Philippines Medical Center, UNICEF, and the United States Agency for International Development.


  1. ^ Shill, Aaron. "Generosity, humility reflected in lives of donors", Deseret News, Utah, 26 March 2009. Retrieved on 6 August 2019.
  2. ^ Weaver, Sarah Jane. "LDS Philanthropies depicts organization", Church News, Utah, 15 September 2005. Retrieved on 6 August 2019.
  3. ^ Dias, Elizabeth. "‘Mormon’ No More: Faithful Reflect on Church’s Move to Scrap a Moniker", The New York Times, Utah, 29 June 2019. Retrieved on 6 August 2019.
  4. ^ Walch, Tad. "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints issues new name guidelines, dropping terms Mormon, LDS in most uses", Deseret News, Utah, 16 August 2018. Retrieved on 6 August 2019.
  5. ^ "New edifice to house LDS Philanthropies", Deseret News, Utah, 20 February 2007. Retrieved on 6 August 2019.
  6. ^ Stack, Peggy Fletcher. "Mormon feminists, LDS Church unite in scholarship drive", The Salt Lake Tribune, Utah, 29 February 2012. Retrieved on 6 August 2019.
  7. ^ "LDS Church donates $341,000 to Provo homeless shelter", LDS Living, Utah, 9 November 2010. Retrieved on 6 August 2019.

External linksEdit