Jet Li — One Foundation
“I took two steps and the water was at my hips. Two more, and it was at my chest. Then it was just under my nose. I put Jane on my shoulder and was trying to hold on to the nanny’s hand; she was struggling because her head was already underwater. I turned back, and everything—the beach, the swimming pool—was gone. I was just standing in the ocean, in nothing.”
This is how Jet Li describes his harrowing experience during the 2004 tsunami that he was caught in while on vacation in the Maldives.
Living through a disaster pushed Jet Li to focus on what he could do with his knowledge of how important humanitarian aid is to the survivors of this kind of calamity. In 2007, he went on to set up the One Foundation. When asked about the origins of the name, he said,
“My formula is very simple: one person + one yuan per month = one big family. That is, if everyone contributes a little, it will unite us.”
The One Foundation is primarily about helping with disaster relief, both in the immediate aftermath of a disaster, as well as other aspects of helping those affected by it.