GiveTrack: Tracking Your Charity Donations on the Blockchain

The nonprofit BitGive is developing a platform that allows you to make donations in bitcoin and trace your money all the way from your wallet to the charity project.

Author Julian Furtkamp:

Translation Julian Furtkamp, 10.02.17

Bitcoin Transfers Are Cheap and Quick

Set up in 2013, BitGive is the first nonprofit to have made it possible to make donations via Bitcoin. With its help, organisations such as Save the Children, The Water Project and Medic Mobile are now all able to accept donations in the cryptocurrency. And there are a few benefits to making money transfers in Bitcoin rather than traditional methods:

  • Transactions are fast: they’re often confirmed within ten minutes.
  • Fees are very low: when money crosses borders, traditional transfer services like Western Union are usually very expensive.
  • Donors are receiving organisations can engage with each other directly, regardless of where they are located.

But there are a few significant disadvantages/risks too:

The blockchain technology that documents bitcoin transactions is also well suited to creating a transparent picture of where donated money ends up and the route it takes.

And BitGive’s new flagship project aims to take advantage of exactly that: GiveTrack is set to be a donation portal that uses the advantages of the bitcoin and blockchain technology to carry out projects quickly and transparently.

For more about blockchain and the extraordinary role it could play in making our world more sustainable, check out our article: Blockchain: A Digital System For Real World Sustainability.

Bitcoin + Blockchain = Transparent Donations

With GiveTrack, it will be possible to follow individual donations and see where they end up. With the help of the blockchain each transaction is already registered from wallet to wallet, which makes it much easier to track. Transactions are often confirmed within ten minutes, although on some occasions it can take up to one to two days.

Donation and project tracking with BitGive will go a little something like this: first, donations are collected until a certain sum is reached. When there is enough, the project is started and the funds are transferred to the organisation running it. The individual steps needed to implement it are documented and at the end the result is a successfully completed project.

The launch of GiveTrack was already announced on various news sites at the start of December, but at the moment there is only a demo video and a call for donations to support the development of the project and a beta version is set to be released in October. It will be an MVP (Minimal Viable Product) – a basic version that will be improved based on users’ feedback.

In the future the donation portal is set to be available for everyone, but donations will first be limited to organisations registered in the USA. The Water Project and Medic Mobile are included in that, both projects that BitGive has already worked with.

Check out the video below for a short intro to GiveTrack.

This article is a translation by Marisa Pettit of the original article which first appeared on RESET’s German site.

Blockchain: A Digital System For Real World Sustainability

It's been called "one of the most important scientific achievements of the last 100 years" and "the distributed trust network that the Internet always needed and never had." So, what exactly is blockchain technology and how does it work?

The Circular Economy Goes Digital

The "circular economy" doesn't just mean recycling. It aims to fundamentally reduce the amount of waste we produce and potentially create a zero-waste society. With the ever increasing digitisation of our daily lives, we now have more opportunities than ever to keep waste levels low.

Trine’s Crowd Investing in Solar Projects Helps Tackle Global Energy Poverty

Crowd investing platform Trine lets people invest small amounts of money in solar energy systems for off-grid communities. Successful projects mean a return on your investment, and people around the world gaining access to clean electricity.

How SolarCoin Is Adding Extra Value to Solar Energy Generation

As well as helping to save the planet through reducing pollution and combatting climate change, thanks to SolarCoin, producing renewable energy can now also generate currency.

Could Share & Charge Be the Airbnb of Electric Cars?

E-mobility meets sharing. Share & Charge is a new platform that has a fresh idea for how to tackle the problem of insufficient of charging points for electric cars - by connecting EV drivers with people and their private charging stations at home.

Gotta Catch ‘Em All…for Charity

Charity Miles is a free app that donates money to charities for every mile walked, jogged or bike by the user. The popularity of Pokémon Go led to a surge in registered miles.

TransActiveGrid: When Neighbours Become Energy Providers

A neighbourhood in Brooklyn now manages its own micro-grid, allowing residents to purchase solar energy directly from their neighbours.

Keeping Charity in Check

AidData tracks development aid funding and uses GIS, open source data and a number of other approaches to shed some light on where donations go and how they are spent.

Stick to Your Resolutions or Pay Up (to Charity)

Need an extra incentive to achieve your New Year’s resolutions? Create a ‘Commitment Contract’ on if you fail (and you probably will), you will have to donate a penalty to charity or to an organisation you hate.