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Vitalik Buterin and OmiseGo fund $1 million USD to refugees

Ethereum’s co-founder Vitalik Buterin and OmiseGo contributed $1 million USD in cryptocurrency to aid the support of refugees living in extreme poverty.

Written by Becky Leighton Published on

With the gap between impoverished and wealthy ever widening, it is always refreshing to see notable figures making the news to try and reduce the inequality.

This is where Vitalik Buterin, one of Ethereum’s co-founders, steps up to the plate time and again. Early in January, we saw the humanitarian donating to anti-aging research and then a month later he was backing another non-profit with his own profits.

And Buterin isn’t looking to stop.

This time he’s continuing the trend by teaming up with OmiseGo, an open payment platform using Ethereum’s blockchain. The news was announced on the platform’s blog, that together they are “donating the equivalent of $1 million USD in OMG tokens directly to refugees living in extreme poverty.

The initiative comes in because it takes the centralized banking system out of the equation. Refugees often struggle to become a part of the formal economic system through banks because they are missing the right documents and so any financial process becomes nightmarishly difficult. With a decentralized system, it will be possible for those who have run from their countries to have easier access to funds.

OmiseGo conveyed their excitement about the prospect of working on this and said that they are “looking forward to collaborating on a project that embodies our shared vision of a freer, more decentralized world.“ The platform’s slogan “Unbank the Banked,” aligns with the vision laid out by GiveDirect, an NGO based in Uganda who will be the direct point of delivering the donated funds to the refugees.

In the statement, it was expressed that refugees “are precisely the people we wish to see benefiting from the “unbanking” effect that OMG is designed to create. We’re excited to plug them back in, transfer funds, and let them get to work.”

Founder of OmiseGo, Jun Hasegawa, not only promotes the vision of the project in the announcement, but also encourages readers to follow in Buterin’s steps. He concluded the statement with an invitation to help, saying that this “is an open effort, and anyone is welcome to support it by sending contributions of ETH or ERC20 tokens to GiveDirectly’s Ethereum.”

Written by

Internet writer looking to find the right piece. Also presents things on radio and happens to be a chip off the old blockchain. @BeckyRLeighton

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