Hollywood A-lister Tom Hanks has been recognised for his charitable efforts by the Elie Wiesel Foundation, who presented the actor with a humanitarian award at a ceremony held at the New York Public Library.
Twice Oscar winner Hanks spoke of the important role government can play in promoting and funding the arts given its capacity to be a force for social good.
Hollywood star Tom Hanks:
"I believe any form of government, particularly ours in the United States of America, has been over and over again this engine for social change in a magnificent way when it gets around to doing the right thing. And right now, I think we're putting an awful lot of emphasis on the idea that maybe philanthropy can take care of everything, which is not the case. Fact is a lot of this stuff is part of the intellectual and enlightening infrastructure that keeps America going. Some of that certainly is all about people who have blessings and go ahead and share them and give back to the cause and give back to the system. But philanthropy isn't ever going to be the only answer.”
Elie Weisel is a Jewish-American Nobel Peace Prize winner, writer, professor and Holocaust survivor. The Foundation in his name was set up to combat intolerance and injustice and is rooted in the memory of the Holocaust.