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Refugee Charity Receives Huge Crypto Donation

The New York-based charity Give Directly has announced that it has received a donation of USD 1 million from startup OmiseGo and Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin.

Give Directly uses publicly available data on poverty to enroll recipients, region by region, using GPS technology in order to establish genuine cases of extreme poverty. Once no irregularities are discovered, a payment is sent using SMS of around USD 1,000, or the nearest equivalent to a year’s living costs, via local money agents in the recipient’s town or village. Safeguards have been put in place to ensure that electronic funds have been received correctly. The current focus of the charity is the refugee crisis in Uganda.

The charity has been appealing for support since 2013 and to date has received donations totalling over USD 200 million. Companies such as Google, eBay, and Facebook are just some of the charity’s donors. Give Directly now plans to align itself to the crypto industry and seek its support, encouraging both high profile figures and the general public to engage in its charity raising projects. The most simple way to donate is by using the charity’s crypto wallet.

Jun Hasegawa, CEO of Omise, OmiseGo’s parent company, recently reflected on just how much the crypto economy had grown over the course of a year, often “bringing a great deal of wealth to many people and organizations” and suggested that “extravagant generosity” was the way to go for the future rather than harboring newly found wealth.

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,, Watsi, Water Project, Code to Inspire, Bitgive and Epic Change.

Charities trialling Bitcoin donations are on the rise. More familiar High Street names include such well-known organizations as the Red Cross and Save the Children.


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