Machel Family Charitable Fund


The Machel Family Charitable Fund was founded on the principle of giving others a helping hand.

In the mid-'60s, on the corner of Burrard and Smithe in the city of Vancouver, Canada; Arnold Machel, at the time a young child, found himself literally stuck in the mud. What today is home to Le Crocodile and IGA was, at that time, a muddy empty field. Ever the adventurer, Arnold decided to take a short cut through it. Sinking deeper and deeper as he walked and ultimately sinking knee-high into the mud and clay, he began to fear that he could continue to sink into oblivion and may never make it out. As young children are prone to do, his imagination ran wild and he began to cry for help. That was when the west end of Vancouver was not as populated as it is today, but fortunately, a kind stranger heard his cry and came to his rescue, lifting him out of the mire and clay and setting his feet on firm ground.


Inspired by a combination of that event and the U2 song “40” (a paraphrase of Psalm 40) that so closely mirrors his experience, the core goal of the Machel Family Charitable Fund is to assist individuals who are stuck and need a lending hand to move forward. It is guided by the following 5 principles…

  1. Teach a man to fish, then leave a legacy by teaching his kids to fish. While funds may be provided for relief from time to time, it is preferred to fund organizations that we believe will have a significantly long-term and sustainable impact towards the elimination of poverty and homelessness.
  2. Get a great bang for our charitable bucks. Fund programs and organizations that make their funding dollars stretch. Where appropriate, strive to take advantage of matching programs.
  3. Think long term. Don’t use band-aid solutions but get to the core and put the focus on working with the younger generation wherever possible.
  4. Focus on relative need. For example, we believe that employment-skills training has greater value for under-privileged kids than dance lessons. Not that there’s anything wrong with dance lessons. That’s just not our focus.
  5. Aim for perpetuity. While the foundation may elect to make payments of principal from time to time under certain circumstances, the intent is to provide funding on a perpetual basis and at the very least for no less than 10 years.

The Machel Family Charitable Fund is managed through two Donor Advised Funds: Abundance Canada and the Strategic Charitable Giving Foundation, both registered Canadian charities. They manage charitable giving funds, known as donor-advised funds. These organizations receive and maintain donated funds, which are invested, and then granted to recommended charities.

In addition to our own, we also support other charities. Find out more here!

Disclaimer: Mackenzie developed the Mackenzie Charitable Giving Fund program with the Strategic Charitable Giving Foundation, a registered Canadian charity. Donations under the program are irrevocable and vest with the Foundation. The information is general in nature and is not intended to be professional tax advice. Each donor’s situation is unique and advice should be received from a financial advisor. Please read the program guide for complete program details, including fees and expenses, before donating.