Jeff Bezos gives 40 grants worth $123 million to fight homelessness

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Jeff Bezos is making his first donation since the Amazon founder pledged last week to give away most of his $116 billion net worth.

On Tuesday, the Bezos Day One Foundation announced that it has awarded $123 million in grants to 40 organizations in the United States. The foundation said it hopes the donations will “help families transition from unsheltered homelessness and shelters to permanent housing with the services they require to achieve stability.” Launched in 2018, the First Day Fund is Bezos’ $2 billion commitment to help homeless families and build preschools in low-income areas.

Bezos promised to give most of his fortune to his girlfriend Lauren Sánchez. CNN Interview on November 12. At the time, neither Bezos nor Sanchez said exactly where they planned to donate the money.

Billionaire philanthropy

Bezos has been slower to announce his philanthropic plans than other billionaires such as Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Berkshire Hathaway chairman Warren Buffett.

Gates earlier this year bailed He promised to “give my entire fortune to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation” and “fall down the list of the world’s richest people and eventually leave it.”

Bezos has not signed the Giving Pledge, a pledge made by hundreds of the world’s richest people to give away the majority of their wealth during their lifetime.

Bezos made the biggest donation of 2020: a $10 billion commitment over 10 years to fight climate change. Bezos and Sánchez have also given grants to other philanthropists, such as a recent $100 million grant to Dolly Parton, earmarked for the singer’s own philanthropy. “We couldn’t think of a better person to give this award to than Dolly,” explained Sanchez. CNN on November 12.

During his time CNN During the interview, Bezos tried to explain his slower approach, suggesting that he wanted to ensure the money was used “colorfully.” The Amazon founder added that “there are a lot of ways you can do ineffective things” with large donations.

A few days after Bezos’ interview, Mackenzie Scott, the richest woman in the world and the ex-wife of the Amazon founder, announced. Medium he said he donated $2 billion to nearly 350 organizations in just seven months.

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