Matthew Mcconaughey thinks ''being able to give back'' is a ''selfish act''.

The 50-year-old actor set up the Just Keep Livin' foundation in 2008 to give aid to students in need, but has said he doesn't like being called ''selfless'' for the charity work he does, as he believes the ''good'' feeling he gets from being kind makes the act ''selfish''.

He said: ''Being able to give back in ways is a selfish endeavour. It feels good to me to see a smile or hear a young person say thank you. That's called a selfless act? I call it a selfish act.''

Matthew set up his foundation with the help of his wife Camila Alves, and the organisation currently employs 84 teachers in 37 high schools around America to serve over 3,000 students.

And speaking about the origins of the foundation, Camila said: ''When you have your first child and you're in the position that Matthew is, whoever gets that first photo will make a lot of money. When we found out that the person was going to make over a million dollars on a photo, we were like, 'No. We're going to do an exclusive and get the money and put it into the foundation.' ''

The couple also try to make sure their children - Levi, 11, Vida, 10, and Livingston, seven - value philanthropy, as well as striving to give their brood ''what they need'' to grow into kind-hearted adults.

Speaking in a joint interview for Town & Country magazine's new philanthropy issue, Matthew added: ''Affluent people can give their kids everything they want but they're not usually going to get what they need. Loving a child is a lot harder if you really give a damn. 'No' takes a lot more energy. It's a lot easier to say 'yes.' ''