Planned Parenthood North Central receives $20 million gift

March 24, 2022 GMT

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — Planned Parenthood North Central States has received an unexpected donation of $20 million from billionaire philanthropist MacKenzie Scott.

It’s the largest donation in the organization’s history. Scott is the former wife of Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos.

North Central States operates 28 facilities in the Dakotas, Minnesota, Iowa and Nebraska.

Scott revealed Wednesday that she has donated nearly $4 billion to 465 nonprofits, including $275 million to Planned Parenthood Federation of America.

Sarah Stoesz, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood North Central States, said she’s still in shock.

“I was speechless. I can sort of talk about it. Now. I’m beginning to get my feet back. But it was the sort of thing that just never happened. It never happens,” she said. “And the fact that we show up, day in and day out for people who otherwise would have nowhere to go was very meaningful to MacKenzie Scott and that was why she was making this gift to us.”


Stoesz said the money bring tremendous relief, South Dakota Public Broadcasting reported.

“We are facing significantly escalating costs related to inflation, and also there is a shortage of healthcare workers in our country, and so our costs of providing care are going up,” she said. “So knowing that we now have $20 million, I’m very grateful.”

The donation comes as South Dakota’s governor, Kristi Noem, signed a bill Wednesday that would make the state one of the most difficult places to get abortion pills, though most of the law will not be enacted unless the state prevails in a federal court battle.