Sukanto Tanoto had a dream that one day Indonesia will be free of poverty. He then formed the Tanoto Foundation with the intent to reduce poverty through education, empowerment and enhancement programmes.
This Founder and Chairman of the Royal Golden Eagle (RGE) has since contributed greatly in the efforts to eradicate poverty in Indonesia and took part in many philanthropic activities planned by the Tanoto Foundation. He has also run a number of programmes. One of them is improving the quality of people’s lives.
To improve the quality of life of the people, Sukanto Tanoto directed the Tanoto Foundation to conduct various programmes, and began by fulfilling basic needs such as sanitation, clean water and basic health care. The Tanoto Foundation built and renovated clean water, toilets, septic tanks and drainage facilities, for the 45% of rural residents who did not yet have access to clean water and adequate sanitation.
The Tanoto Foundation also conducted hygiene campaigns to improve the health of the local community, and collaborated with two business units from RGE, the APRIL Group and Asian Agri in the implementation of these campaigns. In addition to building clean water and sanitation facilities, they also helped improve the quality of Posyandu and Poskesdes with the support of the government in the rural areas of North Sumatra, Riau and Jambi.
They provided important equipment and reconstructed Posyandu and Poskesdes. In addition, the Tanoto Foundation also ran training courses for health workers, providing free health services for the general public and conducted health campaigns.
The Tanoto Foundation rolled out other activities in their support to improve people’s lives, such as the running of women’s empowerment programmes. Sukanto Tanoto’s wife and founder of Tanoto Foundation, Tinah Bingei Tanoto, said that there must be a special system that supports competing women when they entered the workforce.
Based on these directives, the Tanoto Foundation provided a variety of childcare and education support such as day care centres and educational institutions such as PAUD, TK, and schools for the families of employees in Riau, Jambi and North Sumatra. Thanks to these facilities and support provided, many women began to have the choice to work outside the home, enhance their capabilities and contribute financially to their families and the local economy.
The Tanoto Foundation also rolled out support for health research, disbursing funds to assist research on various diseases that are prevalent in Asia. Support was given for research on diabetes and cardiovascular disease conducted by the Mayo Clinic in the United States, and also for lymphoma-related research, as well as genetics and cell in cardiovascular disease.
Another activity undertaken by the Tanoto Foundation is natural disaster relief. The Tanoto Foundation moves quickly to provide assistance when a number of disasters occur – tsunami in Aceh and Nias in 2004, earthquake in Yogyakarta in 2006, West Sumatra in 2009, Ciamis in 2009, Mentawai tsunami in 2010, the eruption of Mount Merapi in 2010 and Mount Sinabung in 2010 to 2015. The Tanoto Foundation’s hope is to continue in their quest to improve the people’s quality of life.