The Foundation was established by Royal Decree (No. A/143) of The Custodian of The Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud on Ramadan 29th, 1431 H, corresponding to September 8th, 2010. King Abdullah issued this decree during his lifetime, to give tangible form to his humanitarian goals and contributions locally and globally, and to ensure the continuity of goodwill and charity initiatives through multisector endowment projects supervised by the Foundation during his lifetime and after his death. According to the Royal Decree, the Foundation was established as a “contribution to charitable and humanitarian activities that aim at serving religion, the nation, the country and all humanity, and at achieving prosperity and scientific development”.

King Abdullah issued another Royal Decree (No. A/10) on Muharram 13th, 1433, corresponding to December 9th, 2011, which slightly altered the Foundation’s name to  “King Abdullah International Foundation for Humanitarian Activities”, whereby the word “charity” was deleted from the original name since it is synonymous with “humanitarian”. The Foundation is known by its shortened name, “King Abdullah Foundation”.