BREAKING: Bezos’ Foundation Donates $5 Million to Crossroads Rhode Island

Tuesday, November 20, 2018


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Jeff Bezos

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and his wife MacKenzie are giving $5 million to Crossroads Rhode Island to help fight homelessness.

The donation comes through Bezos’ foundation the Bezos Day One Fund and its program the Day 1 Families Fund.

“Crossroads is honored to be recognized by the Day 1 Families Fund as an organization that is serving as a national model for how to move the needle in solving the issue of family homelessness. Ending family homelessness in Rhode Island is possible, given adequate funding and access to affordable housing units,” said Karen Santilli, President, and CEO of Crossroads Rhode Island.

In total, Bezos' foundation donated $97.5 million to 24 nonprofits across the country.

Other grant recipients from around the country include bode Services, Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Miami, Catholic Community Services of Western Washington, Community of Hope, Community Rebuilders, Crossroads Rhode Island, District Alliance for Safe Housing (DASH), Emerald Development & Economic Network (EDEN) Inc., FrontLine Service, Hamilton Families, Heartland Family Service, Housing Families First, JOIN, LA Family Housing (LAFH), Northern Virginia Family Service (NVFS), Primo Center for Women and Children, Refugee Women’s Alliance (ReWA), SEARCH Homeless Services, Simpson Housing Services, The Salvation Army of Greater Charlotte, The Salvation Army of Greater Houston, UMOM New Day Centers and Urban Resource Institute (URI).

Crossroads Helping Families

According to Crossroads’ press release, the vast majority of Rhode Island’s families experiencing homelessness are working poor, who often hold multiple jobs, but still struggle to get by.

In 2017, the nonprofit provided services to 3,300 men, women and children. As a result, more than 1,740 people, including 448 families, were no longer homeless last year.

Latest on Bezos, Amazon

As GoLocalProv reported last week, Amazon announced that it will be building new offices in New York City and just outside of Washington D.C.

The announcement comes after over 230 cities, including Providence, made bids to land the headquarters.

According to Amazon, the company will hire more than 25,000 employees in each location, as well as, open an operations center in Nashville, Tennessee.

Amazon adds that hiring will begin in 2019.

RI’s Bid

As GoLocalProv reported in April, Rhode Island submitted a bid for Amazon HQ2 but missed the cut to 20 cities. 

See RI Commerce's Proposal to Amazon Below

According to Commerce, seven Rhode Island cities and towns were included in the proposal.

Statement from Commerce at the time of the proposal: 

The proposal is comprised of partnerships with the state’s municipalities, universities, and businesses. The bid focuses on Rhode Island’s best attributes: its talent, location, and quality of life. The proposal also describes the partnerships, business climate, affordability, and incentives that make Rhode Island attractive.

Accompanying the bid, the Stat created which includes Rhode Island’s 90 second business attraction video “Look a Little Closer" testimonial videos from some of the state’s CEOs, and footage from an earlier version of our “Fun Size” tourism campaign. Both the bid and the supplemental website were submitted to Amazon last Fall.

The document was a collaboration among multiple state agencies and partners including the Partnership for Rhode Island, municipal leaders, Rhode Island’s colleges and universities, the Chambers of Commerce and the business community. The document can be downloaded in full on


Related Slideshow: RI Commerce’s Amazon HQ2 Pitch - 2018


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