Amazon's Jeff Bezos to start $2 billion charitable fund

Here’s why the world’s richest man Jeff Bezos wore pajamas to a board meeting

Here’s why the world’s richest man Jeff Bezos wore pajamas to a board meeting

Within this, the Day 1 Families Fund will support existing non-profits that offer shelter and food to young homeless families.

The other component, called the "Day 1 Academies Fund," will create "and operate a network of high-quality, full-scholarship, Montessori-inspired preschools in underserved communities", Bezos said.

By Spencer Soper Jeff Bezos, the billionaire Amazon.com Inc. founder who for years kept mostly mum about his philanthropic vision, at long last outlined how he plans to give away a portion of the world's largest personal fortune.

He told the Washington dinner later: "I'm very excited about that because I'm going to operate that".

"We'll use the same set of principles that have driven Amazon", wrote Bezos.

"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.

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While he has financially supported cancer research and scholarships for immigrants, among other causes, Mr Bezos has primarily devoted his fortune to his Blue Origin rocket company, which he described on Thursday as an "investment in the future of our planet through the development of foundational space infrastructure".

Many on Twitter, however, did not hurry to heap praise on Bezos' new endeavor, pointing out Amazon's practices of underpaying its workers and forcing employees to work in stuffy warehouses without air conditioning. In January, Bezos also personally gave $33 million USA in college scholarships for young immigrants living in the U.S. illegally.

Last year Bezos solicited advice from the public via Twitter, asking how he could best use his wealth to help people "right now".

It is not surprising that the world's richest person "is finally getting serious about philanthropy", said David Callahan, founder of website Inside Philanthropy. "If you can give somebody a leg up when they're 2, 3 or 4 years old, by the time they get to kindergarten of first grade, they're much less likely to fall behind". "I start with a mission (to address a problem) you can do it with government, you can do it with non-profit or you can do it with for-profit".

Bezos said his decision to select Seattle for Amazon's original home base was due to Microsoft being there and he had plenty of technical talent to pull from in city.

Launched in 1994 as an online bookseller, Amazon has become a retail powerhouse operating globally, and has expanded into streaming video, music, cloud computing and other segments, and a year ago acquired the Whole Foods grocery chain.

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