Amazon Smile Leaves Tzadaka Organizations Without the Smile
Amidst the most significant layoffs in the company's history, Amazon is eliminating its charity program, AmazonSmile.
In this program, Amazon donated 0.5% of eligible purchases to a charity chosen by the customer. Customers were required to select a charity of choice on their amazon account and check out on a separate AmazonSmile webpage in order for 0.05% of their purchase to qualify for the donation. Since the program began in 2013, Amazon has donated around $449 million globally to charities.
"After almost a decade, the program has not grown to create the impact that we had originally hoped," Amazon said in a notice sent to customers Wednesday night. "With so many eligible organizations — more than one million globally — our ability to have an impact was often spread too thin."
The executive director of one heimishe organization expressed displeasure at this development, telling BoroPark24, "Amazon claims the program wasn't making much of an impact, and that the money was 'spread thin,' but half a billion dollars sounds like quite the impact, and all charities can use donations, no matter how small."
Amazon announced that the program would end on February 20. Until that date, charities part of the program can still accrue donations. After that point, Amazon told charities, "You will be able to continue asking for the support from Amazon customers in other ways, like creating your product lists."
To "help minimize the impact that this decision might have," Amazon says they will give the charities a one-time donation equivalent to three months' worth of donations when the program ends.
Amazon plans to "make meaningful change" elsewhere by investing in affordable housing, providing computer science education for students in underserved communities, and assisting in natural disaster relief.
Another organization shares, "Amazon should be straightforward and tell us they need to cut back instead of claiming their program isn't impactful enough. I never heard any of these charities complaining about the small donations they get from Amazon. And now, when times are tough, these donations are essential."