Chairperson and founder of the Reliance Foundation Nita Ambani has been named among the Top Philanthropists of 2020 in the latest issue of the US-based magazine Town & Country.
The philanthropist has been awarded for leading the Reliance Foundation in its efforts to help fight the coronavirus pandemic. The foundation led efforts in feeding frontline workers as well as the poor and needy. It is also credited with setting up India's first Covid-19 hospital.
Ambani is the only Indian to feature on the reputed list which features globally reputed names such as talk show hots Oprah Winfrey, Apple CEO Tim Cook, celebrated fashion designer Donatella Versace, actor Leonardo Di Caprio, and others like Michael Bloomberg, Laurene Powell Jobs, the Lauder Family, and others.
Recognizing Ambani's efforts, Town and Country magazine noted, "The Reliance Foundation—the philanthropic initiative of Reliance Industries - distributed millions of meals and masks to frontline workers and the poor, set up India’s first hospital for Covid-19 patients, and donated $72 million to an emergency fund."
Responding to the incident, Ambani said, "Crises almost always demand immediate and urgent attention, of relief, of resources, of ingenuity and most importantly of compassion."
"Over the years, we have equipped ourselves at the Foundation and at Reliance Industries to respond to crises with immediate, multi-pronged as well as systematic and calibrated responses to make our effort impactful and sustained. We are pleased and humbled that our initiative is being recognised at the global level. Our philanthropy is committed to support our government and our community whenever the need arises," she added.
Under Ambani's leadership, the foundation built a 100-bed hospital facility in Mumbai in under two weeks to accommodate the growing number of Covid-19 cases. The hospital, which started taking patients by the end of March, expanded to increase the number of beds to 220 by the end of April.
Reliance Foundation also launched a food service called "Anna Seva" to provide food to the hungry amid the growing humanitarian crisis. The program has managed to feed 50 million people since its inception amid the pandemic.