The Life You Can Save is an organization founded by the philosopher Peter Singer and based on the basic tenet of Effective Altruism: leading an ethical life involves using a portion of personal wealth and resources to efficiently alleviate the effects of extreme poverty.
The Life You Can Save enhances and supports the Effective Altruism movement. Through public outreach, we provide information and promote community participation in activities that reduce poverty and economic inequality.
We will champion the cause of giving in order to save and improve the lives of those less fortunate than us, and we will spread knowledge of what we all can do to reduce poverty. We will encourage people to publicly pledge a percentage of their income to highly effective aid organizations. We acknowledge that every person's pledge will reflect their personal best commitment, and we will support donors in striving to improve upon their commitment.
The majority of us agree: if we could easily save the life of a child, we would. If saving a drowning child meant simply wading into a shallow pond and pulling the child out, we would not hesitate to take this action. The fact that we would get wet or ruin a good suit would not outweigh the act of saving a child's life.
UNICEF estimates that 19,000 children die every day from preventable, poverty-related causes. Yet almost a billion people live very comfortable lives, with money to spare for many things that are not vital to survival. When did you last spend money on something to drink, when drinkable water was available for nothing?
The Life You Can Save seeks to change this disparity.
World-renowned philosopher Peter Singer educates the public on effective philanthropy and his work strives to bring about a new paradigm for donating in the developed world. With the publication of his book The Life You Can Save in 2009, Peter founded this organization of the same name, meant to spread and make practical the central ideas of the book.
We at The Life You Can Save endeavor to change the culture of philanthropy by making giving to help the needy a societal expectation and qualifier for a moral and just life. We want unnecessary luxuries to become anti-status symbols. We want the idea of who is in your community, and therefore deserving of your help, to expand beyond your immediate family, friends and geographical region to include the entire world. And we want people to think carefully about where they give so that they can help the world's poorest as much as possible with their donations.
As Peter Singer argues in his book, if everyone who can afford to contribute to reducing extreme poverty were to give a modest portion of their income to effective development charities, extreme poverty would be eliminated.
In pursuit of these developments in popular thinking, we are working hard to spread our message through public outreach, through the proliferation of local groups of informed givers and through a global online community. We encourage people to donate by providing the information and technical tools to make a public pledge. We support those who are not yet ready to pledge by inviting them to participate in our community and the Effective Altruism movement. We keep abreast of issues surrounding philanthropy, global poverty and charity cost-effectiveness, and we share the latest news with our followers.
The Life You Can Save is part of a broader movement known as the Effective Altruism movement. Effective Altruists are individuals who devote a significant part of their life to improving the world as effectively as they can. The Effective Altruism movement is young, but growing steadily and we welcome the day when Effective Altruism is a commonly recognizable lifestyle choice.
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The Life You Can Save is a movement of people fighting extreme poverty. We hold that an ethical life involves using some of our wealth and resources to save and improve the lives of those less fortunate than us.