Published: Thu, September 13, 2018
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Amazon's Jeff Bezos launches $2 billion fund to help the homeless

Amazon's Jeff Bezos launches $2 billion fund to help the homeless

The Amazon founder, the world's wealthiest person, said Thursday on Twitter that he would commit $2 billion to fund existing nonprofits working to help homeless families and create a network of nonprofit preschools in low-income communities.

For the homeless, grants will be given to organizations "doing compassionate, needle-moving work to provide shelter and hunger support to address the needs of young families", Bezos said.

The second will launch a network of "high-quality, full-scholarship" preschools in low-income communities, which a Day One Fund organization will directly operate.

The announcement marks a deeper foray into philanthropy for Bezos, whose fortune has soared to more than $160-billion thanks to his stake in Amazon, according to Forbes.

A picture shared by Amazon chief Jeff Bezos on Instagram. Earlier this year, the company partnered with the Seattle nonprofit Mary's Place to build a permanent homeless shelter in its headquarters.

Bezos and Amazon's board of directors are convening in Washington, D.C., this week ahead of a series of high-profile appearances for Bezos, who also is the owner of the Washington Post, among other personal properties.


In his tweet, Bezos said the exciting questions to ask were: "Where's the good in the world, and how can we spread it?"

"He's a pretty fantastic neighbour, him and [his wife] MacKenzie", said Mary's Place director Marty Hartman.

In the education realm, Bezos is tipping his hat to the intensely private and media-shy Bezos Family Foundation that is run by his parents. "Never have I been more comfortable at an Amazon board meeting!"

"Another way we're raising awareness is through our special #GoGold boxes - you may receive one during September", he added.

Last year, he donated $33 million to fund scholarship for "dreamers", the name given to undocumented children of immigrants who face legal obstacles in attending college or university. As per the current Giving Pledge signatory, Bezos is not participating. The Seattle-based Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation as the world's largest private nonprofit foundation has an endowment worth over $40 billion U.S. and has long supported homelessness services for families in the city.

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