Millionaire ex-con sells all to look after Ugandan orphans

A telecommunications tycoon has given up his “incredibly selfish” life and is moving to Uganda to start a charity helping orphans after ‘finding God’.

Jon Pedley, who by his own admission has in the past pursued money above everything else, has decided to sell his businesses, his home and all of his furniture to pay for his charity ambitions.

Mr Pedley’s charity, Uganda Vision, will support local Ugandan children who have been orphaned by Aids and poverty.

Orphans

The self-made tycoon also hopes that the charity will build the self-esteem of troubled British teenagers who could come and work with the orphans.

And while many would have qualms about such a dramatic lifestyle change the 41-year-old has no such doubts.

Mr Pedley said: “I’ve never been more sure about anything in my life”.

Many people would consider Mr Pedley, who ‘found God’ after a car crash in 2002, an unlikely champion for the poor based on his previous lifestyle.

Crime

Describing his previous way of life, Mr Pedley said: “‘I’ve been convicted of crime, slept rough, been an alcoholic, had affairs, and damaged people’s lives including my own.”

“I’ve always put the pursuit of money in front of everything else.”

But he added: “‘I’m now teetotal and I try to live my life in a way that pleases God”.

Happiness

Last month an economic psychologist warned that money doesn’t make people happy.

Dr Chris Boyce, commenting in the wake of the nation’s biggest EuroMillions lottery win, said: “Money, as the age-old truism goes, does not buy you happiness”.

In January one of Britain’s youngest lottery millionaires was found dead alone in his home.

Stuart Donnelly, who was 17 when he won £2 million in 1997, had become a recluse as he struggled to cope with his new found wealth.

And last year Callie Rogers, 22, who won close to £1.9 million as a teenager in 2003, revealed that she is now facing bankruptcy.

She admitted her life was a “shambles” and the money she won had not made her happy.

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