Billionaire Jeff Bezos gives away $123 million to fight homelessness

Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos becomes first person to worth $200 billion

The Amazon co-founder and fourth richest man in the world, with a net worth of $115 billion, has donated $123 million to organizations that help homeless people find permanent housing.

The grants, ranging from $600,000 to $5 million, to 40 groups in 26 US states and Puerto Rico are the most recent and largest from Bezos’ Day One Fund, which was established in 2018.

According to the Day One Fund, the donations are effective immediately and are part of a $2 billion total commitment to fighting homelessness.

The foundation made a $2 billion commitment to focus on making meaningful and lasting impacts in two areas: funding existing non-profits that help families experiencing homelessness, and creating a network of new, non-profit tier-one preschools in low-income communities.

The commitment to fight homelessness is his second charity donation this month.  Bezos earlier said that he plans to give away the bulk of his fortune during his lifetime, with most of his philanthropy focused on fighting climate change and supporting those who seek to unify others. He gave Dolly Parton – the music legend who happens to be the latest recipient of his Courage and Civility award $100 million to direct to any charities she chooses.

The fourth richest man on earth announced for the first time during an interview with CNN that he plans to donate his money to people and charities that are unifying humanity and helping to heal deep social and political divides. For years, he largely stayed on the philanthropy sidelines and drew criticism for not signing the Giving Pledge, a promise by many of the world’s richest people to donate the majority of their wealth to charitable causes and Other Philanthropic Gestures.

Forbes estimates that Bezos has donated more than $2.4 billion to charity in his lifetime.

  • He committed a total of $10 billion to his own climate nonprofit, the Bezos Earth Fund, in 2020. As of November 2021, the fund had granted nearly $1 billion of that total.
  • Last year, he launched an annual Courage and Civility Award of $100 million that he grants to a recipient to distribute to charities of their choice. He recently granted that award to legendary singer Dolly Parton.
  • He previously awarded similar amounts to chef Jose Andres, whose World Central Kitchen feeds people in disaster-stricken areas, and Van Jones, climate advocate and CNN contributor.

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