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Oak Foundation

13: Climate Action


Oak Foundation commits its resources to address issues of global, social, and environmental concern, particularly those that have a major impact on the lives of the disadvantaged. Through our grant-making, we support others to make the world a safer, fairer, and more sustainable place to live. With offices in Europe, India, and North America, we make grants to organisations in approximately 40 countries worldwide.


The resources of Oak Foundation originated from an interest in the Duty Free Shoppers business which Alan Parker helped to build. Today, the Foundation comprises a group of philanthropic organisations based in various countries around the world.

Oak Foundation was formally established in 1983. Early grants were made in Denmark to organisations supporting single mothers and torture victims (1983) and in Zimbabwe to groups supporting vulnerable children and families, primarily at community levels (1984). Grants continued to be made annually in several countries until a new phase for Oak Foundation began in the early 1990s, when annual grant-making increased and staff were hired to run substantive programmes.

Since then we have been growing steadily and today we have seven global and four country programmes, through which we have made more than 6,300 grants to organisations around the world. Our seven programmes are: Environment, Prevent Child Sexual Abuse, Housing and Homelessness, International Human Rights, Issues Affecting Women, Learning Differences, and the Special Interest Programme. Our four national programmes are located in Brazil, Denmark, India, and Zimbabwe.

Oak Foundation has its main administrative office in Geneva, Switzerland and a presence in five other countries: Denmark, India, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Zimbabwe.

Why are we called Oak Foundation
The Trustees named the foundation after the oak tree because the tree embodies strength, resilience, longevity, and protection. The hope is that the foundation will flourish from generation to generation, reflecting the interests of those generations.

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