Pineapple Fund Donates $5 Million in Bitcoin as Seed Capital for the Poor
One of the greatest things about having true wealth is offering a helping hand to those less fortunate. A new venture, Pineapple Fund, is showing the luckiest members of the bitcoin community how can this be done best.
Pine, the anonymous bitcoin whale behind the $86 million Pineapple Fund, has announced a $5 million donation to the organization Give Directly, for its “seed capital for the poor” project. The donation will help sponsor direct cash transfers to people living in extreme poverty conditions in Kenya, Uganda, and Rwanda.
The charity, supported by Google and others, is known for its rigorous analytical approach to finding the most impactful ways for distributing donations. It boasts a 91% efficiency rate, a high benchmark in a field full of organizations that waste much more on administration and fundraising costs.
Only revealed to the public earlier this month, the Pineapple Fund has already donated to six previous charities. These include Watsi ($1Mn), The Water Project ($1Mn), the Electronic Frontier Foundation ($1Mn), the Bitgive Foundation ($500K), MAPS psychedelic studies ($1Mn), and the Open BSD Foundation ($500K).
Universal Basic Income
Beyond helping the specific families that will be supported by the cash transfers, the project is also used to test the efficacy of universal basic income (UBI). Unlike social welfare and many traditional charity schemes, one of the central tenets of UBI is that it is not tied to specific requirements and demands from the recipients. This is meant to prevent people from falling into a poverty trap where they can’t try to improve their financial conditions without losing their support.
UBI was one of the hottest economic topics of 2017, mostly talked about as a possible solution to technological unemployment – keeping people from falling behind once robots take over all the jobs we have today. By working in countries such as Kenya, where the average Give Directly recipient lives on just 65 cents per day, the organization is able to test the UBI concept with modest costs before it’s implemented in more expensive regions of the world.