Honoring our local roots.

Honoring our local roots.

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What We Do

The work of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation spans the globe, but we have a deep commitment to improving the lives of people in Washington State, where the Gates family has lived for generations.

We honor our local roots by giving back to the community that has given us so much. In our home state, each year the foundation grants about $300 million to nonprofits based in the Greater Seattle region. Explore these grants in more detail.

A Focus on Education

We aim to strengthen education so that all children growing up in Washington State can complete college, earn a family wage, and give back to their community in meaningful ways. To reach this goal, we’re supporting partners that empower students where they live, learn, and play.

Our beliefs and values:

  • We focus on equity—to ensure that a child’s race, gender, family income, or zip code no longer predict how well they’ll do in school.
  • We start early—supporting high-quality pre-K and helping teachers and students excel in math and language.
  • We believe learning is about more than academics—the definition of success must include the development of a student’s social and emotional skills.
  • We focus on stability—working with partners to address family homelessness and ensure children have access to safe, stable homes that keep them in school. Learn more about our family homelessness investments.
  • We promote connection—between after-school and summer programs, parents, teachers, principals, and community organizations to develop the habits and programs that support education wherever children are.

Through all our efforts, we are committed to engaging partners in discussions about how programs and investments will effectively dismantle the racial and structural inequities that limit opportunities, so that people historically marginalized can participate, prosper, and reach their full potential.