Harnessing the Power of NFT for Charity
The State of Doing Good
There are plenty of worthy causes around the world and within our communities.
We need to deal with the climate crisis that connects us all. There is also the matter of gender equality that benefits all of society. Addressing global health is of utmost importance too, especially amid the COVID-19 pandemic to prevent disease and deliver better health for all. Not to mention, humanitarian efforts, such as protecting refugees, forcibly displaced communities and stateless people, cannot be overemphasised. Besides these, we have the issues of global peace, human rights, access to water and sanitation, access to quality education, and the list goes on.
Funding these noble causes is a perennial issue that public charities and private foundations alike grapple with.
The Rise of NFTs
Innovative ways to raise funds, support initiatives and facilitate partnerships is a must and that is where we think NFTs or non-fungible tokens can make a difference.
NFTs are crypto assets that are unique and different from the next, unlike cryptocurrencies like Bitcoins that are indistinguishable from each other and can be swapped in a fungible manner.
NFTs also provide provenance on the blockchains they were minted on, where authorship and ownership can be proven, and is a great way to create digital scarcity that can lead to increased valuation and returns.
Data from market tracker DappRadar shows that in 2021, the NFT market exceeded $23 billion in trading volume as the speculative crypto asset exploded in popularity.
NFTs appeal to collectors who are typically early investors of cryptocurrencies. These crypto natives have seen their fortunes increase dramatically with the rise of cryptocurrency values in the past decade.
This untapped community of potential philanthropists is a force to be reckoned with, and just harnessing 1% of the annual sales of NFTs for charity could mean accelerating the access of COVID-19 vaccines to countries hard hit by the pandemic, lifting millions above the poverty line, clean water for all, and so much more.
The huge price tags of NFTs that we see often grabbing media headlines are dependent on perceived value and the desire to own a one-of-a-kind item (even if it is intangible). As with any other commodity, desire inflates value — especially when the item is rare.
An Ethereum whale’s purchasing spree for CryptoPunks over the weekend of July 29, 2021 saw volume of sales exceed $22 million and the success of Mila Kunis’ Stoner Cat NFT animated series, launched in the same month, selling out within 40 minutes to a tune of $8 million have further cemented the appeal of NFTs to collectors.
How Do We Harness NFTs for Charity?
With the increased interest in NFTs, more artists, brands, and celebrities are getting on board. Many creators are donating large portions of their profits to their favoured charities.
Some examples include Twitter CEO, Jack Dorsey, who donated $2.9 million from the sale of an NFT of his first tweet to GiveDirectly, a non-profit organisation that supports people affected by COVID-19, living in extreme poverty in Africa and the US.
Beeple raised $6 million as part of the Open Earth Foundation’s Carbon Drop Collection to combat climate change with the auction of his digital art piece called ‘Ocean Front’.
Ellen DeGeneres auctioned off her first NFT for a modest $31,000 and donated the proceeds to the World Central Kitchen, a not-for-profit organisation that provides meals for people affected by natural disasters.
At the 27th amFAR gala at the Cannes Film Festival 2021, 1500 open edition NFTs of “On the Wings of an Angel” by Sacha Jafri were auctioned off in 45 seconds for 750,000 Euros, with the entire amount dedicated to amfAR’s AIDS research programmes.
In commemoration of its 75th anniversary in 2021, UNICEF launched 1,000 NFTs to support digital connectivity among schools in underserved communities. This raised a total of 235 ETH for UNICEF’s Giga, which has connected over 3,000 schools to the internet, benefitting over 700,000 children, and mapped over 1 million more to help target investment in connectivity.
Considering that the crypto space is often under scrutiny for the wrong reason, harnessing NFTs for the power of good is a breath of fresh air. By supporting charitable causes through the purchase of NFTs, we support and reward artists who are now receiving a fairer cut of sales for their artworks, and at the same time, contribute to worthy causes.
Compare this with some arbitrary crypto tax, the donations are more targeted and it is an opportunity for not just people with means, but even the common man on the street to channel much needed funds to charity.
Furthermore, a new generation of philanthropists may find it organic to donate in cryptocurrencies and NFTs may become the norm for attracting donations in the foreseeable future.
The Mars Panda NFT Marketplace
Mars Panda is a unique platform that has a know-your-customer (KYC) process to identify and verify each client when they open an account. This has allowed it to be chosen as the NFT platform to power Singapore’s inaugural NFT charity auction, Blockchain for Good by Blockchain Association of Singapore, which raised more than SGD$400,000 in September 2021 for the National Trade Union Council U-Care Fund and subsequently also supported local Singapore newspaper, The Straits Times, with its first-ever NFT auction, where over SGD$21,000 was raised for The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund.
Mars Panda has launched a charity NFT (Non-fungible tokens) auction in support of UNHCR’s humanitarian efforts for vulnerable displaced Afghans. The auction will take place from January 31, 2022 to March 4, 2022 and feature over 30 NFTs that world-renowned authors, digital and fine arts artists, NFT influencers, and professional footballers have pledged to the auction.
We are happy and excited to be part of this new frontier in philanthropy. Let us all join our hands to make this world a better place for everyone!
About Mars Panda
Mars Panda is a complete eco-system which consists of:
- NFT Marketplace
- Games Ecosystem consisting of native Mars Panda game with NFT game and play to earn elements
- Decentralised Finance (DeFi) and TradeFi
We aim to fuse mainstream eCommerce and Gaming to the crypto world of NFTs and DeFi, on one seamless, unified platform that will evolve into an all encompassing metaverse.
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