A London businessmen has launched a charitable organisation that allows investors and traders to “sweep up” tiny bits of crypto into a collection pot which is then distributed to worthy causes.
London finance executive Duncan Murray was introduced to blockchain – the technology behind bitcoin – in 2015, but only became involved in crypto little under two years ago.
The 41-year-old was instantly hooked and began trading small amounts before setting his mind to seeing how it could be used for good.
“One of the things that struck me immediately was the technology behind bitcoin and the power it had to change numerous sectors – namely the charity sector,” he said.
“As the trustee of a family charity, I’ve learned about the problems which charities have and face and the ways technology can potentially help.
“It’s one of the best use cases for blockchain – to eliminate the waste and lack of transparency in the sector.”
After experimenting with crypto trading, Duncan discovered he was faced with a collection of “dust” – the very small, almost worthless, amounts of crypto – that he could do nothing with.
“When I realised how many annoying and small amounts of cryptocurrency I had in various wallets I began to think about ways they could be used.
“I’ve not been in crypto very long but even after just 18 months I realised I had 10 to 12 small amounts on one exchange and I realised instantly that could be put to better use.
“It was frustrating to see and to not be able to use it, so I thought ‘well, if I have this then the hundred other thousand people on this exchange have that and the serious traders probably have 50 to 100 lines’ and therefore it just clicked that you could use that for something beneficial, and if it was on blockchain it could be seamless.”
Within days, Mr Murray had conceived DustAid as a platform to allow users to donate either in fiat or crypto through a blockchain-based platform directly to individual projects around the world.
“The main objective initially was to sweep up all the dust that gets left in wallets and exchanges that are either there because they’re below transaction fees or they’re just very small and not worth moving to another exchange and converting,” he added.
“Individually those amounts are quite microscopic, but together on one exchange and aggregated to another exchange they can be meaningful amounts.”
DustAid launched earlier this month with three charity projects, although more projects and partners will be announced over the coming months.
“Those projects are fully vetted and fully registered charities and they set milestones for success,” added Mr Murray.
“Via our banking partners we will be able to see donations going in but also how and where charities are spending it, bringing total transparency to the entire cycle so the donor gets alerts when those milestones are hit and the charities save money because there are fewer transaction fees, and they gain more donations.”
Three charity projects launching with DustAid are: The Little Edi Foundation Shoebox Appeal which helps orphans in Romania by giving out boxes of toys, Space For Giants – a charity working to protect elephants in Kenya, and the UK-based Ormiston Families which works with disadvantaged children.