Mr Bezos, whose Amazon fortune has made him the world's richest person, added that he has had "a couple of conversations" with Mr Trump, but declined to say what was discussed. The new "Bezos Day One Fund" is the result; it'll work to issue "awards" to existing nonprofits that provide shelter and food to homeless young families.
The Day 1 Academies Fund will launch and operate a network of high-quality, full-scholarship, Montessori-inspired preschools in underserved communities.
Amazon will select a location for its second headquarters by the end of the year, CEO Jeff Bezos said Thursday night. "The secret sauce of Amazon - the number one thing that has made us successful has by far is obsessive, compulsive focus on the customer".
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. Bezos was in town with his parents, who run the Bezos Family Foundation.
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. "If our own great-grandchildren don't have lives better than ours, something has gone very wrong", said Bezos in a statement shared on Twitter.
As with most investment decisions by the Amazon founder, this one was likely grounded in data and science.
Jeff Bezos, Chairman and CEO of Amazon, speaks at the George W. Bush Presidential Center's Forum on Leadership in Dallas, Texas, US, April 20, 2018.
"We will build an organization to directly operate these schools".
He said he did not know how much money he would eventually give away. This year, Gates also announced it was taking up systemic poverty in the U.S. Bezos was previously criticized for giving relatively little to charity.
Bezos, who founded Amazon as an online book store more than two decades ago, has seen his wealth surge along with Amazon's stock. It previously helped the nonprofit temporarily house 200 homeless people.