How DLT Will Enhance Charities

Few people doubt the merits of the charitable sector, however good intentions aren’t in themselves enough to ensure that management and allocation of resources is as effective as it could be.

All too often charities fail to reach the very people they intend to help due to underestimating logistical hurdles, trade barriers, and cultural differences.

Recent findings show that in the USA, 50 charities received 1.35bn (based on tax filings) over 10 years but less than 30% reached intended recipients.

Charity directors, employees and contractors need to be paid, and this is before you take into account that there is considerable duplication of resources within the sector.

These valid criticisms and concerns regarding the sector almost always relate to the administration and barriers that prevent donors reaching the very people they seek to help.

This has led people to rethink the traditional charitable model that consists of several intermediaries between the donors and recipients. Distributed Ledger Technology has the potential for people to be connected directly and receive payments in a decentralized and instantaneous environment free from third parties.

In theory it is a perfect match, however the practical realities of digital currency remittances and charitable donations are complicated by the situation many donors face in terms of trust. Will recipients of charitable donations act honestly and administer funds as efficiently as possible?
In Venezuela where PolloPollo is focused, many people are desperate, and the temptation not to do so is great. Such problems exist in wealthy countries too. Potential pitfalls related to human character are further compounded by the country’s collapsing infrastructure and low levels of digital literacy, the truth is in Venezuela there are relatively few businesses that accept payment in digital currencies despite popular misconceptions that the country is a test ecosystem for bitcoin use.

There are relatively few exchanges people can use to exchange currencies, and these problems are compounded by the lack of computer and financial literacy amongst the broader public who would struggle to comprehend what is still a very niche area of technology and finance.

Even for those that understand how to use digital wallets and exchanges, they then have to contend with Venezuela’s frequent blackouts impeding internet services.

The PolloPollo platform was developed to ensure people who might not understand cryptocurrencies and exchanges could still benefit from the underlying technologies.It places the responsibility for exchanges and wallets with merchants and retailers who tend to be better placed in terms of resources for dealing with donations and passing on products.

It places the responsibility for exchanges and wallets with merchants and retailers who tend to be better placed in terms of resources for dealing with donations and passing on products.

All citizens have to do is register for food and medicines that store owners have and then when a donation has been made via the Obyte cryptocurrency platform they can collect the goods.

The need for on/off ramps for government currencies has been removed, they merely need to have internet access.
A recent PolloPollo recipient: one 40 kg bag of chicken feed covers about 2 months, and costs about a week’s food budget for herself and her daughter.

PolloPollo was designed by Casper Niebe of Obyte and a team of students from the IT University of Copenhagen.

Its purpose is not to distribute cryptocurrencies to those in need, but rather apply the technology as a means to provide humanitarian aid directly to those in need, whilst free from intermediaries that inevitably take a cut of the funds received.

Casper envisages the PolloPollo platform as reconceptualising how people view charitable donations and delivery of physical products. By taking physical objects such as chickens and medicine and tokenizing them for a set number of bytes, it enables holders of bytes to make donations for these products instantaneously.

Physical goods are digitalized and uploaded as tokenized products that can be paid for using digital tokens anywhere in the world with a few clicks on buttons.

Customs barriers, checks, taxes, currency exchanges and transportation costs are eliminated enabling donors to reach the very people they seek to help directly.

Cryptocurrencies and charitable donations won’t solve the problems of Venezuela’s brutal socialist dictatorship and economic mismanagement of one of the world’s most resource rich countries.They do however provide a much needed alternative store of value that is free from political/central bank interference and devaluation in a country that is currently suffering 130,000% inflation.

They do however provide a much needed alternative store of value that is free from political/central bank interference and devaluation in a country that is currently suffering 130,000% inflation.

Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) also provides an immutable record of the transfer of value and ability to transfer funds and resources instantaneously between separate parties where traditionally trust and time issues have been real impediments to ensuring transactions take place.The humanitarian crisis with Venezuela cannot be ignored, generalisations that bitcoin and other digital currencies can create a parallel economy alongside the Bolivar are both simplistic and flawed.

The underlying Distributed Ledger Technology does however serve an immediate purpose of ensuring transparent, immutable transactions of other products between two parties who would otherwise have been forced to use expensive and cumbersome alternatives. It is this technology’s potential for positive impact in a desperate environment that led to the creation of
The humanitarian crisis with Venezuela cannot be ignored, generalisations that bitcoin and other digital currencies can create a parallel economy alongside the Bolivar are both simplistic and flawed.

The underlying Distributed Ledger Technology does however serve an immediate purpose of ensuring transparent, immutable transactions of other products between two parties who would otherwise have been forced to use expensive and cumbersome alternatives. It is this technology’s potential for positive impact in a desperate environment that led to the creation of PolloPollo underpinned by Obyte.