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Jeff Bezos Pledges $2 Billion Toward Education and Homelessness

Jeff Bezos Pledges $2 Billion Toward Education and Homelessness

We'll use the same set of principles that have driven Amazon.

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is to launch a $2bn (£1.53bn) fund to help homeless families and launch pre-schools in poor communities.

The Day 1 Families Fund will start an organisation to operate a new network of full-scholarship preschools for low-income communities.

It's not yet known what his preschools will look like except that they will be based on the teaching philosophy of Maria Montessori, which focuses on play-based learning that caters to individuality and social-emotional development. It is a contrast to the long view that Bezos has preached at Amazon and Blue Origin, the space-travel technology company he has been funding with $1 billion a year through the sale of Amazon stock.

Despite his fortune, Bezos has not been a major philanthropic donor and Amazon has been criticized in its home of Seattle, Washington, for doing little to address problems of the growing homeless population.

Even so, Amazon insisted it was "deeply committed" to tackling homelessness in Seattle and said it would continue to invest in local nonprofits that work with the homeless. City leaders quickly rescinded the levy.

In 2016, Bezos was asked if he planned to pursue philanthropy like Gates has. The vision statement comes from the inspiring Mary's Place in Seattle: no child sleeps outside. The Amazon boss and his wife, who have four children, both serve on the foundation's board directors.

"We will build an organization to directly operate these schools".

Sawant is referring to the Seattle head tax that the Seattle City Council adopted and then repealed a month later. Amazon warehouse employees are known to have very bad working conditions, pitiful wages, and have even been forced into homelessness after workplace injuries.

Bezos solicited ideas on Twitter a year ago for ways to donate some of his wealth.

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.

Gates has also, with billionaire investor Warren Buffett, encouraged wealthy individuals to pledge half their fortunes to worthy causes.

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