With an estimated net worth of more than $66 billion, Buffett ranks third on the Forbes 2016 list of the world's richest people — which means he has plenty of cash to give away to causes like HIV research, family planning programs and college scholarships.
Yes, dentures: This Saturday, the Boston Globe reported that one of Buffett's less-than-conventional philanthropic endeavors involves buying various things for random people who ask nicely.
The operation is run by Buffett's sister, Doris Buffett, and is dedicated to giving away money to those in need. Individual donations usually fall in the range of $4,000 to $5,000, and have gone toward helping people cover the cost of everything from mortgages and other debt, to children's clothing, to hearing aids, to — you guessed it — dentures.
All told, the Buffett siblings have donated about $12 million through this initiative to date, the Globe reported.
"My brother is putting up the money, so we're sort of limitless," Doris Buffett explained to the Globe, adding that every time funds run low, her brother just sends her some more of his Berkshire Hathaway stock, whose A-shares are worth, as of Tuesday afternoon, about $220,000 a pop.
The family is keeping things old-school: Applicants are required to submit their cases via handwritten letters. They also must supply references, who are contacted as part of a background check to weed out potential scammers and ne'er-do-wells.
And where do you come in?
All of that screening takes a lot of work, Doris says, which is why she's seeking out volunteers to help her. Apparently it takes a long time to look through thousands of requests.
Volunteers will need to have a discerning eye, as the Buffetts are particular about whom they'll give money to. For instance, Doris refuses to give money to people who gamble, smoke or are irresponsible with their finances, the Globe reports.
Sorry, gamblers, smokers and, well, most people.
If you're interested in pitching in, applicants to review requests for money are advised to write a handwritten letter as well: Details on where to send your note, as well as what personal information the Buffetts hope you'll include, can be found at www.letters.foundation.
Just do a quick comb of your Facebook photo albums first.