As recent fundraiser for Michael Rogers – aka “Trolley Man” – shows, it’s no doubt how powerful platforms like Kickstarter and GoFundMe can be.
However, for some, these centralised platforms are not always accessible – something that crypto platform Seeds is working to address.
Based on the concept of “asking the blockchain for help”, the platform initially intended to stimulate in-app gaming purchases. And according to their website, users are “60% more likely” to make a purchase as a result.
But Seeds CEO Rachel Cook is taking the project a step further by allowing app users to donate for charitable causes right from their game screen.
“Seeds is the easiest way to ask the blockchain for help and receive it as a gift, with no strings attached,” Cook explained in an interview with Authority Magazine.
“It exists to try and cure the rampant, systemic discrimination I have personally seen baked into institutional finance.” [blockquote]
Cook’s company is an innovative solution to the massive problem of economic inequality around the world. And so far, it seems to be working.
The world of microloans
Seeds operates as a token pegged to Ethereum which can be purchased by users of the app. This purchase then becomes a “microloan”, that is sent to disadvantaged communities or individuals across the globe.
“We all need a little help sometimes,” says Cook. “The intention behind Seeds is about bringing good, bringing harmony, to the world.”
James Jerembiah is a shop owner in Nairobi, and a recent beneficiary of a Seeds loan. With the financial assistance he was able to multiply his income six-fold, while widening his customer base and providing more products.
Similarly, chicken-farmer Jane Nginyo has been able to increase her flock of hens from 200 to more than 1,000.
James and Jane both benefited enormously from modest Seeds loans, and they are not alone. The platform often posts updates of other recipients on Twitter.
Harold redeemed a Seeds token for $1K to help 2 families through Rebuild Upstate, which serves disabled, elderly, & low income people in SC.
— Seeds (@seedstweets) October 10, 2018
Seeds is not the only company that is using crypto for charitable purposes. In fact, crypto for charity is on the rise. Last year, Fidelty Investments reported a ten-fold increase to crypto donations from the previous year.
Companies like Sean’s Outpost fundraise entirely with Bitcoin in order to feed the homeless in Pensacola, Florida. For the Pineapple Fund, a wide range of charities have been supported from the anonymous donation of 5104 bitcoins in 2017.
Protecting Identities, and Victims
Seeds recently helped a sexual assault survivor who, for her safety, wanted to remain anonymous. The individual was able to anonymously raise funds using the platform, after being unable to work due to trauma.
CEO of Seeds, Rachel Cook is now working towards making this anonymous fundraising a reality for all survivors. Speaking with Coindesk, Cook explains that:
“Survivors have trouble giving themselves permission to ask for money,” Cook said.
“The next logical extension I saw […] was we need to talk about how this economic [crypto] system can meet this need.” [blockquote]
From assault victims worldwide to Kenyan shop owners and farmers, Seeds encourages consumers to conduct in-app purchases that will assist disadvantaged people.
The platform is a great example of #CryptoForGood, and fills a void of support that governments aren’t capable of addressing.
So next time you’re playing a phone game, don’t be so quick to ignore the ad pop-ups. One of them could be Seeds, helping those in need.
Liz is a Canadian journalist and writer for Bitcoin Australia. Connect with her on Twitter @Elizabeth_Utley, or on Linkedin as Elizabeth Utley.