Amazon fulfillment has long been committed to giving back to the communities where employees live and work. The company contributes to the community in a variety of ways: through hundreds of local and national grants made every year across North America; through thousands of employee volunteer hours; and through the donation of products from Amazon inventory to local nonprofits.
Amazon Fulfillment’s primary focus is on neighbors in immediate need, particularly families facing homelessness and hunger. It is also focuses on providing resources to the next generation of innovators and helping ignite in them a lifelong passion for science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). In addition, the company listens to its fulfillment employees’ suggestions for local causes near and dear to their hearts and supports community organizations that have meaningful impacts.
What follows are a few of the ways Amazon is proud to give back to the communities it serves.
Globally, childhood and adolescent cancer is threatening to overtake infectious diseases as one of the highest causes of disease-related mortality in children. As part of Amazon’s focus on supporting future innovators, Amazon is committed to #GoGold each September—Childhood Cancer Awareness Month—to help raise awareness of this important health issue.
In addition to turning millions of Amazon.com customer boxes gold, and even one of our Prime Air planes, Amazonians across the world have shown their support for the cause by wearing their pajamas to work in recognition of the brave children with cancer who often spend countless hours in their pajamas during treatment and recovery. In 2017 and 2018, Amazon hosted Camp Amazon-style events for children impacted by cancer, in which they and their families toured a fulfillment center and engaged in fun STEM activities. As a part of Camp Amazon, donations were made to support kids and childhood cancer research at local children’s hospitals across the country.
Rise & Smile
Research shows that students who eat a good breakfast perform better and have improved behavior in the classroom. Yet, of the number of low-income students who qualify for free breakfast, only half actually receive the meal. This means that millions of kids in America start their school day on an empty stomach, impacting their ability to be engaged learners.
Working with Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign, Amazon awarded grants to 100 schools in the U.S. as part of its Rise & Smile breakfast project, which is expected to result in more than 4.5 million breakfasts in the classroom for more than 27,000 students across the country. These grants have allowed teachers and administrators to tailor their breakfast programs so that every student can enjoy a healthy breakfast. By helping kids start their day with a well-balanced breakfast, Amazon can support their ability to thrive and help empower them to be the next generation of innovators.
Designed to connect Amazon’s investment in STEM education and robotics with the desire to encourage students to build, imagine, and innovate, Camp Amazon is a robotics and STEM day camp held at or near fulfillment centers across North America. The goal of Camp Amazon is to make the connection between STEM skills and the real-world application of STEM concepts in fulfillment centers, as well as provide tools and support to students in local communities. Camp Amazon gives children a chance to get excited about STEM and see robotics in action, while showing them how creative thinking is critical to Amazon operations.
Amazonians bring their knowledge and expertise to food banks around the U.S. as part of the community Kaizen program. Amazon routinely holds Kaizens in which small teams of employees come together to identify efficiencies and streamline processes. The word “kaizen” is a Japanese term that means “change for the better.” Amazon throws its support behind the word’s meaning and hold Kaizens throughout communities, donating not just money or products but also skills and expertise to organizations that serve families in need.
In communities with fulfillment centers, best practices are shared with food banks and other organizations to help them scale up to serve more clients and optimize their operational efficiency to maximize their offerings for the people and families they serve. Over time, Amazon hopes this work will enable its partners to accept and process more donations and direct more dollars toward providing goods and services to their clients.
Amazon fulfillment center associates are dedicated to their communities, and this is reflected in their commitment to service through Amazon Cares groups across the country. Amazon Cares groups are grassroots, associate-led initiatives that provide opportunities for associates and managers to volunteer in their own backyards.
Because the program is driven by a partnership of associates and leaders within each fulfillment center, teams are able to choose volunteering activities that match their interests and support their local communities.
Amazon Cares teams volunteer with organizations across the country, including:
- American Cancer Society
- Assisted living facilities
- Boys & Girls Club of America
- Homeless shelters
- Local food banks
- Elementary schools
- Junior achievement
- Salvation Army
- United Way
- Habitat for Humanity
Across each of the initiatives outlined here and throughout all of the many additional programs Amazon supports, the overarching goal is to help create change for the better. Thanks to the work and commitment of thousands of Amazonians, that goal is being met each day in both large and small ways, in local communities stretching across the globe.