Google Pledges To Match User Donations 2 To 1 To Help Fight Ebola

Though Bill and Melinda Gates have been the faces of philanthropy among tech circles, Google stepped up to the plate by matching user donations two-to-one to help fight the Ebola epidemic. Google began urging its users to donate to one of its partners a week ago, offering to match every dollar with $2 of its own, and it's been a success.

In a short time period, Google reached its limited of a combined $7.5 million, $2.5 million of which came from user donations an the other $5 million from Google itself. What makes this particularly interesting is that it's the first time Google CEO Larry Page asked users to do something like this.

That $7.5 million figure is part of a much bigger sum on Google's part. The search giant kicked off its campaign by giving $10 million right off the bat to support nonprofits such as InSTEDD, International Rescue Committee, Medecins Sans Frontieres, NetHope, Partners in Health, Save the Children, and U.S. Fund for UNICEF.


"These organizations are doing remarkable work in very difficult circumstances to help contain this outbreak, and we hope our contribution will help them have an even greater impact." Page stated in a blog post.

Separate from all that, Page's family foundation donated $15 million to fight Ebola, which just today claimed its second life in the U.S.

Dr. Martin Saliea, a surgeon who was diagnosed with the disease in Sierra Leone and flown to Nebraska over the weekend for treatment, died earlier today, NBC News reports.

"It is with an extremely heavy heart that we share this news," said Dr. Phil Smith, medical director of the hospital’s biocontainment unit. "Dr. Salia was extremely critical when he arrived here, and unfortunately, despite our best efforts, we weren't able to save him."

The Ebola outbreak in West Africa is the largest to date. In the eight months since it was first reported by the World Health Organization (WHO), there have been over 14,000 suspected cases and more than 5,500 deaths, numbers which some believe grossly underestimate the real toll of the disease.