These women are helping Amazon become a more sustainable business

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 Amazon is dedicated to becoming a more sustainable business, which is one of the reasons we co-founded The Climate Pledge. We also know that sustainability goes beyond protecting the environment; it’s also about protecting the human rights of the people in our communities around the world.

This year for Women’s Empowerment Month, we’re introducing some of the women advancing Amazon’s sustainability commitments in a variety of ways.

Melanie LeGrande works with nonprofits that are fighting human trafficking, including Polaris, which runs the National Human Trafficking Hotline to help victims and survivors of the illegal $150 billion industry. Amazon Web Services helps by infusing cutting-edge technology to drive Polaris’ development of the largest known U.S. data set on trafficking. Since 2007, Polaris has identified more than 73,000 human trafficking situations by analyzing calls, texts, online chats, webforms, and emails.

“Studies have shown that technology has enabled trafficking to grow as a criminal enterprise,” LeGrande said. “If technology is an enabler of this issue, then technology should be utilized to fight it.”

This Amazon fund is helping innovators make education more fun

The Alexa Fund aims to help parents instill in their children a passion for learning about science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). The fund invests in companies that innovate in voice, artificial intelligence, and ambient computing, and it supports a wide portfolio of startups in fields like robotics, gaming, health, and education, specifically in the areas of STEM.

Zoobean co-founder Jordan Lloyd Bookey is one of those innovators. She helps libraries and schools use technology and data to inspire their students and young patrons to read. Originally launched as a curated book-of-the-month club, Zoobean started in Bookey’s home. The business has since made its way to the stage of the TV show Shark Tank and now includes Beanstack, a gamified platform that makes logging reading time easy and fun.


New Amazon programs help adults and teens learn cloud computing skills for free

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 Two new, free Amazon training programs can help adults and teens learn foundational cloud computing skills in a fun and engaging way, offering a practical experience that could help them prepare for jobs in the cloud.

The programs—AWS Cloud Quest: Cloud Practitioner and a new version of AWS Educate—teach basic cloud computing concepts. In AWS Cloud Quest, learners zap drones and collect gems in their quest to solve challenges in a virtual city. AWS Educate provides access to hundreds of hours of free, self-paced training, resources, and labs that are designed for learners who are new to the cloud and as young as 13 years old.

The programs are part of Amazon’s commitment to invest hundreds of millions of dollars to provide free training in cloud computing skills to 29 million

Amazon will invest more than $124 million to build 1,060 affordable homes near four public transit sites in Washington state’s Puget Sound region and in and around Arlington, Virginia. The projects aim to bring people closer to more opportunities, services, and a better quality of life.

The investment is part of the more than $2 billion Housing Equity Fund, Amazon’s commitment to create and preserve 20,000 affordable homes for people and families earning moderate to low incomes in the Puget Sound and Arlington regions and in Nashville, Tennessee.

Since the launch of the Housing Equity Fund in January 2021, Amazon has invested more than $1.2 billion to create and preserve 8,000 affordable homes for people earning moderate to low incomes, including first responders, teachers, and service industry employees whose wages haven’t kept pace with escalating rents.

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