Brian Armstrong, the CEO of digital currency service Coinbase, is launching a project to help people out of poverty with a personal USD 1 million donation.
The new charity project is called GiveCrypto, a global enterprise which will make cryptocurrency donations to worthy recipients, who will then be able to make personal choices in whether to keep their cryptocurrency donations or exchange them for fiat.
GiveCrypto wants to raise USD 10 million by the end of 2018 and grow to a fund of USD 1 billion over two years. Donations will hopefully come from wealthy donors who have amassed wealth through cryptocurrency, passing on their good fortunes to those in need of financial help. Suggested cryptocurrencies for donations are Bitcoin, Ripple, and Zcash.
Armstrong points to research that shows that the immediate transfer of funds directly to recipients is the best way to get support to the right people; it costs nothing to very little to send and is ideal for those who have no access to the banking sector, which in these cases is quite common.
There’s been a significant rise in recent years in charities which are now supported by cryptocurrency donations. Some of these have joined a growing establishment of charities accepting Bitcoin donations such as Electronic Frontier Foundation, Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, WikiLeaks, Antiwar.com, Watsi, Water Project, Code to Inspire, Bitgive and Epic Change.
Blockchain has made charitable donations far more transparent. Simon Moss, a co-founder of Global Citizen, suggests that the technology has the potential to change the face of humanitarian aid, claiming that blockchain can provide the much-needed transparency to donations.
“Blockchain can provide clarity on not only who is donating, but how money and supplies flow through organizations that provide aid – such as tracking a gallon of water purchased by an organization to the location where it was delivered,” he wrote.
Armstrong suggests that there, are, of course, challenges with this type of donation, such as the possibility of the cryptocurrencies being stolen by criminals or corrupt governments, another reason blockchain is increasingly being adopted by charities. Armstrong suggests that this won’t curb his enthusiasm, as distribution is an area he is well familiar with, due to dealing with fraud over the years in his role with Coinbase. His focus remains on those most in need:
“I started thinking about this last year when I saw all this money people were making in crypto… The goal is to target people in poverty and economic crisis.”
To date, contributions have also been received from Ripple co-founder Chris Larsen, venture capitalists Ron Conway and Fred Wilson, Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse, and ZCash CEO Zooko Wilcox.
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