IRS approves public charity status for the Manny Pacquiao Foundation

July 1, 2011 at 7:48 pm | Affordable Housing, Community Development + Public Finance, Entertainment + Film Finance, Tax Issues | No comment


US-based public charity to support Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao’s fight against poverty.

Los Angeles, CA—  Perhaps no other living person embodies raw physical power and sophisticated diplomacy inside and outside the boxing ring as well as Mr. Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao. The “Pacman” is the pound-for-pound best boxer in the world with an unprecedented eight world titles in eight different weight divisions. When Mr. Pacquiao is not delivering power-packed punches in the ring, he is the Honorable Emmanuel D. Pacquiao, a public servant representing the legislative district of Sarangani in the Philippine House of Representatives. He is the “fighting congressman from Sarangani” who uses intellect, persuasion and charisma to forge alliances and create laws which will change the future of the 12th most populous country in the world.

Mr. Pacquiao is more than a boxer and a politician.  He is a compassionate individual who has contributed his personal resources and celebrity to improve the lives of the Filipino people. If he had more time and money, Manny Pacquiao would, without a doubt, help more people. However, since 2008 a few private individuals and businesses have exploited Mr. Pacquiao’s name to solicit donations from local Fil-Am communities. Negative press and misdirected lawsuits resulted against the beloved boxer. But Manny Pacquiao kept his cool throughout these episodes. He waited. And thankfully, his patience was rewarded.

On June 23, 2011, The Manny Pacquiao Foundation was officially approved by the United States Internal Revenue Service as a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and designated as a public charity.  Donations to the Foundation are tax deductible.  The Foundation is organized and operated exclusively to foster, support and transform the health, education and overall social well-being of disadvantaged communities in the Philippines and other countries. Manny Pacquiao is the Chairman of the Board leading a team of accomplished professionals in the medical, educational, arts and nonprofit sectors with untarnished reputations and volunteer experience under their belts. With his charitable arm up and running with projects slated to launch as early as August 2011, Mr. Pacquiao will likely add one more title under his belt, “World Champion Boxer. Politician. Humanitarian.”

The Foundation has existed since December 8, 2008 as California nonprofit public benefit corporation. However, its first set of board members and officers deemed it better to receive donations as a donor advised fund under Give2Asia (a public charity based in San Francisco) until the Foundation’s tax-exempt was obtained from the IRS. The Foundation did not initiate or undertake any major fundraising projects or charitable activities while the IRS reviewed its application. Almost 18 months of correspondence with the IRS (during which time Manny Pacquiao was elected to the Philippine Congress) resulted in the Foundation amending its bylaws, altering the board structure and streamlining its fundraising campaign plan to establish that it would not be organized or operated solely for private interests.  Indeed, the Foundation grants, scholarships and fellowships are specifically off limits to relatives and members of the Foundation’s grant selection committee, officers, directors and substantial contributors.

The Foundation plans to launch a 2-year fundraising campaign to support individuals and organizations engaged in charitable work in the Philippines focusing on health care, education and sports. When asked about what’s in store for the Foundation, Milania dela Cruz, its President, stated, “We hope that Manny Pacquiao fans and supporters worldwide will welcome the real Manny Pacquiao Foundation. We will raise more funds and give more resources to help as many Filipinos fight hunger, disease and illiteracy. Charitable work is closest to Manny’s heart. Please, come join us.”

 The Foundation’s official website will be launched mid-July 2011.  For additional information on the Foundation or donation inquiries, please contact Marsha-laine F. Dungog, Esq. at 213-235-9193 or email:  Hobson Dungog Bernardino + Davis LLP is U.S. legal counsel to Mr. Pacquiao and general counsel to The Manny Pacquiao Foundation.


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