Published: Fri, September 14, 2018
Sci-tech | By Carrie Guzman

Amazon's Jeff Bezos Launches $2 Billion Fund to Help Homeless

Amazon's Jeff Bezos Launches $2 Billion Fund to Help Homeless

We're excited today to announce the Bezos Day One Fund.

The fund will also launch a network of "full scholarship" preschools based in underserved communities.

Amazon chief Jeff Bezos is putting $2bn (£1.5bn) into a charitable fund he has established to help the homeless and set up a new network of schools. "Most important of those will be genuine, intense customer obsession. The child will be the customer".

Last year, Bezos said that he wanted to use philanthropy to help solve society's issues in the "here and now". In the summer of 2017, Bezos tweeted a request from the masses for philanthropic ideas "at the intersection of urgent need and lasting impact".

It's good that Bezos understands that there is a poverty problem, but by throwing his money at third-party organizations-and not focusing on fixing the systemic income gaps his company creates-he is only further proving the point of those who critique the tone-deafness of tech billionaires.

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"The answer is very simple", Bezos told David Rubenstein, the president of the Economic Club, when asked about the topic.

Outside that, Bezos and his family's known donations have included gifts to Princeton University and Seattle's Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Centre, according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy.

Zuckerberg, 34, and his wife Priscilla Chan said in 2015 that they planned to give away 99 per cent of their Facebook stock.

Some analysts have suggested Amazon could face antitrust scrutiny over its growing power in the economy, and President Donald Trump has accused the company of taking advantage of the Postal Service, despite studies suggesting the internet giant's deal has been beneficial to the United States government postal operator. Alibaba owns the South China Morning Post. Some activists and politicians have partly blamed the city's problems on Amazon.

"The Bezos Family Foundation - and Jeff obviously has a role in that - has been engaged with early learning initiatives for years now", Burgess said, adding that it could only help the political momentum toward universal pre-K, as Seattle's preschool program is also once again on the ballot in November. Amazon is designating 47,000 square feet of space at its new corporate office for a permanent Mary's Place shelter.

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