NGOs are traditionally the last to adopt new technologies, but BitGive wants to change that.
In an exclusive interview with Cointelegraph, Connie Gallippi, founder of BitGive, tells how Bitcoin can be used to empower philanthropic actions and charitable causes around the world.
Rafaela Romano: BitGive has always been involved with social causes, combining the potential of cryptomorphs with benefits for society.
Rafaela Romano: BitGive is the first non-profit organization recognized by the US government, why and how is Crypto Revolt a more effective tool to donate or develop social and environmental initiatives?
In recent years, which case, in terms of social impact, has caught your attention the most?
Connie Gallippi: We’ve had many incredible projects in recent years that have received a lot of attention. In 2018, we partnered with Code to Inspire, a programming school for young women in Afghanistan, to raise funds for additional laptops and computers for students. This year, one of our largest initiatives was our Emergency Relief Fund COVID, which provided assistance to well-known charities Direct Relief, GiveDirectly and One Fair Wage during the COVID pandemic.
More recently, we launched with two well-known organizations, Black Girls Code and Heifer International, a project to support their efforts to provide more equitable opportunities to underserved populations and provide farmers with access to technologies and equipment that will transform their operations, respectively.
How are the benefits of this in the third sector?
Connie Gallippi: We are very proud of our 501(c) 3 status and exist to help other non-profit organizations learn how they can use Bitcoin and other cryptomoedas to support their philanthropic efforts. Our giving platform, GiveTrack, allows NGOs to raise funds and leverage cryptomoeda and blockchain technology for all the benefits they offer; including transparency, accountability and accessibility. While money usually reigns when it comes to donations, we want to offer other non-profit organizations several payment options.
NGOs are traditionally the last to adopt new technologies because they are under-resourced and not in a position to be innovative and take risks, but we believe that this innovation is a risk worth taking for the subsequent benefits – we would love to get to the point where all NGOs are able to use this technology to its full potential.
Rafaela Romano: Recently, the Cointelegraph reported that Covid-19 encouraged non-profit organizations to accept cryptomoedas. How did the crisis triggered by the coronavirus catalyze this adoption by non-profit organizations?
Connie Gallippi: On the one hand, the global and local crisis has reduced the ability of many nonprofits to raise funds – there have been mass shutdowns, reduced number of fundraising events, and widespread economic devastation. The move to make everything virtual has allowed companies to continue their activities in some way and open up their public to a public without borders. If non-profit organizations are changing to reach a global virtual audience, bitcoin and other cryptomoedas provide a great way for these individuals to donate.
In many countries, there are tax benefits for social initiatives. What would this process look like with cryptomoedas? Has BitGive been working on ways to put cryptomoks on this institutional circuit?
Connie Gallippi: Yes, we are located in the United States, where Bitcoin and other cryptomaps are considered property and can be donated as „gifts in kind“ with tax benefits, allowing for a direct decrease in revenue or as compensation to acquire capital gains, which have a fiscal responsibility. BitGive, as the first initiative in Bitcoin and Blockchain non-profit officially no 501 (c) 3, offers this tax benefit to donors since 2014.
We have partnered with cryptomoeda tax companies in the past, as well as currently with Bitcoin.Taxes, to offer this tax benefit in a fully integrated manner to people who seek it.
Besides this tax benefit we can offer our donors, we are also a tax free organization, which means that all donations we receive are tax free for us, and any capital gains we obtain from keeping in bitcoin and cryptomoeda are also tax free! In short, this means that all the donations we receive are being used well and the donations at BTC that increase in value over time allow us to do even more impact work only if we are able to make the most of it.