Just over a year ago we donated a vacant building on our downtown Seattle campus to an organization called Mary’s Place, and they turned it into a temporary home for more than 60 homeless women, children, and families. In the year since, hundreds of Amazonians have volunteered with the incredible Mary’s Place team as they work toward a shared goal of no child sleeping outside. My family and I have also spent time volunteering at Mary’s Place, and I can say firsthand that they do amazing work.
All of us at Amazon have been inspired by Mary’s Place and the work they do, and we recently announced that we are building them a permanent home within our campus in Seattle – Amazonians and Mary’s Place families will move in together in early 2020.
And we’re not stopping there. Many cities across the country are seeing a rise in homelessness, and that includes places where we have large groups of employees. Washington, D.C. for instance, was home to one of the biggest spikes in homelessness in the country between 2015 and 2016. And where there are problems, you’ll often find compassionate, inventive people with a lot of grit who are working hard to fix them. That’s what we’ve found in a D.C.-based organization called Friendship Place – a nonprofit that, like Mary’s Place, provides shelter for women and families in emergency situations, and then provides services to help them find stable employment and forever homes.
Today, Friendship Place has announced that Amazon is matching donations up to $1 million in an effort to help them prevent and end homelessness for hundreds of people in D.C. each year. We’re excited about this partnership. If you’d like to support Friendship Place, you can learn more about the work they do here
We’re proud to support innovative nonprofits like these that do such important work. And with guidance from Mary’s Place and Friendship Place, we’ll continue to seek other like-minded organizations as we look for meaningful ways to address homelessness where our teams live and work.