UMOM Receives $5M Grant Through Bezos Day 1 Families Fund Grant

Posted By on November 21, 2018

UMOM New Day Centers is the only Arizona nonprofit to have been selected to receive a $5 million grant from Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos as part of the Bezos Day 1 Families Fund Grant, which will donate a total of $97.5 million to 24 nonprofits addressing family homelessness across the country.

“This is the United States, yet we have young children, right here in Phoenix, living in the worst situations imaginable,” said UMOM CEO Darlene Newsom. “This gift means we can end homelessness for 100 additional families each year. It is our goal to zero-out that waiting list so not one more family suffers. UMOM cannot express our appreciation enough to the Day 1 Families Fund for this transformational gift that will change lives and truly allow more children and their families to sleep safe at night.”

The grant, which will be utilized over four years, will allow UMOM New Day Centers to significantly reduce their need for a wait list for family emergency shelter by opening more units beginning in January. Currently, more than 200 families in the county will have to sleep on the streets or in their car each night, even if they’ve sought help due to lack of resources for local homeless shelters, with an average wait of 11 weeks for a shelter unit.

The Bezos Day One Fund consists of two programs, one that provides funding to nonprofits fighting homelessness and another that is funding and building preschools in low-income communities across the country.

UMOM was established in 1964 and serves approximately 2,000 families annually, with 170 families staying in emergency housing each night. The organization offers emergency, temporary shelter as well as extended stays averaging 247 days for vulnerable families.

Jamie Killin

About Jamie Killin

Jamie Killin is the web editor for Frontdoors Media. She also is a freelance journalist who has been published in Thrillist, Phoenix Magazine, So Scottsdale!, The Arizona Republic and more.