The founder and CEO of Amazon, Jeff Bezos and his wife MacKenzie Bezos, are donating $33 million to TheDream.us, an organization that helps these immigrants, known as Dreamers, for undocumented young people who were brought to the United States as children, paying for a college education.
According to the organization, the Bezos’ donation would pay for 1,000 scholarships for so-called “Dreamers” to attend college, and that it was the largest donation in the group’s history. The money will fund the education of 1,000 Dreamers who have graduated from high school and are part of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which began under President Barack Obama and granted permission to legally work in the US.
“My dad came to the U.S. when he was 16 as part of Operation Pedro Pan.He landed in this country alone and unable to speak English. With a lot of grit and determination – and the help of some remarkable organizations in Delaware – my dad became an outstanding citizen, and he continues to give back to the country that he feels blessed him in so many ways.” Jeff Bezos said in a statement accompanying the news, referring to his Cuban-American father, Miguel Bezos.
“MacKenzie and I are honoured to be able to help today’s Dreamers by funding these scholarships,” he added.
Jeff Bezos’ parents founded the Bezos Family Foundation, a philanthropy organization focused on charitable giving to education. Bezos said he donated in honour of his father.
Bezos has been openly urging the government to reauthorize the DACA program.
According to reports, Bezos was one of 400 executives who signed an open letter to President Donald Trump in September and one of over 100 executives who signed another earlier this week urging Congress to pass a law to protect Dreamers.
The Trump administration is phasing out the DACA program, but Congress has been at odds over what should happen to Dreamers set to lose their deportation protection status.
Not only that, from being in the list of world’s wealthiest man to achieving the title, Bezos faced a lot criticism in the past for not engaging in philanthropy.
As members of Congress debate the future of a program that temporarily protects from deportation near 800,000 immigrants who were brought to the US as children.
Image Source: Brent N. Clarke / Invision / The Associated Press