Leonardo DiCaprio raises 40 Million for his Foundation!

German Personality in Hollywood

Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio, born on November 11th, 1974,  had an half Bavarian, half-Italian father and a German mother, ( Irmelin Indenbirken) who was born in a German air raid shelter in the midst of a World War II air raid. In 1998, DiCaprio established his foundation with the mission of “protecting the Earth’s last wild places and implementing solutions to build a more harmonious relationship between humanity and the natural world” when he was only 24 years old.

According to his website, The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation is dedicated to the long-term health and wellbeing of all Earth’s inhabitants. Through collaborative partnerships, we support innovative projects that protect vulnerable wildlife from extinction, while restoring balance to threatened ecosystems and communities. LDF works in 4 key areas: Protecting biodiversity, wildlands conservation, oceans conservation and  climate change.

Leonardo DiCaprio held the 2nd annual Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation Gala once again at the Domaine Bertaud Belieu Vineyard on Wednesday, July22nd, 2015 in Saint-Tropez, France. The event raised over $40 million for his foundation. The first LDF St. Tropez Gala raised $25 million July 23rd, 2014. Here is the Gala reservation form.
The foundation, otherwise known as the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, will also be donating $15 million in grants to more than 30 organizations implementing conservation projects around the world.  Some of these are Dark Snow (taking measurements from the surface of Greenland to measure the melting Arctic) or the Tetiaroa Society  (A fish and crustacean replenishment program that teaches fishermen in Southeast Asia/French Polynesia how to protect their endangered catfish).  As a scuba diver, my favourite on this list of organizations is Oceans 5 (an international funders’ collaborative comprised of new and experienced philanthropists dedicated to protecting the world’s five oceans).

Leonardo speaks German and he was named Leonardo because he first kicked while his pregnant mother was looking a Leonardo da Vinci painting in a museum in Florence, Italy. His father was a comic book dealer and his mother was a legal secretary.  They separated when Leonardo was a toddler. He was born and raised in Los Angeles, California (or East Hollywood, on the wrong side of the tracks). Leonardo attended Seeds Elementary School, the Los Angeles Center for Enriched Studies and John Marshall High School, although he dropped out after 3 years and eventually earned his GED instead of graduating.

His mother was born in 1943 and immigrated to the US in 1955 with her parents Helene & Wilhelm Idenbirken, who moved back to Germany in the 1980’s. Leonardo’s maternal grandparents were Wilhelm Heinrich Indenbirken (the son of Wilhelm Indenbirken) and Helene Lisbeth Smirnow (1915-2008) (the daughter of Stefan Smirnow and Irene) who was born as Yelena Smirnova in Russia. Wilhelm was German, while Helene was Russian. DiCaprio spent part of his childhood in Oer-Erkenschwick, a town in the district of Recklinghausen, in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany.

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