DIVA Donate partners up with Mercy Corps Ventures to aid Kenyan pastoralists in the event of drought

By Walodja1987 at

TL;DR: DIVA Donate, an innovative conditional donation platform developed by DIVA Technologies AG in collaboration with Fortune Connect and Shamba Network, has partnered up with Mercy Corps Ventures (MCV) to harness the potential of blockchain technology to positively impact the lives of vulnerable communities in the Horn of Africa.

In early 2023, MCV has announced the launch of its second Crypto For Good Fund with the goal to drive global financial inclusion and climate resilience through a series of pilots, demonstrating the scalability of blockchain-enabled solutions in making a positive impact in emerging markets.

Out of a competitive pool of 200 applicants, DIVA Donate emerged as one of the winners, a testament to the teamโ€˜s commitment to demonstrate that blockchain is more than just speculation; it can be a force for positive change for millions worldwide.

๐Ÿ›ก๏ธ Empowering Kenyan pastoralists

The collaborative efforts between DIVA Donate and MCV will focus on leveraging blockchain technology to provide anticipatory cash transfers to pastoralist communities in Kenya, specifically in the counties of Kajiado and Laikipia. These communities heavily depend on livestock and livestock products for their livelihoods and are disproportionately affected by climate-change-induced drought. Read the official pilot announcement here.

โœจ How it works

Users participate in the campaign by depositing funds in the form of the USDT stablecoin through the DIVA Donate web application. These funds are held trustlessly inside the DIVA Protocol smart contract on the Polygon blockchain and released to beneficiaries based on the average Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) observed during the period Q4 2023 reported by the remote-sensed data oracle Shamba Network.

The NDVI is a commonly used metric to assess drought conditions in an area by measuring vegetation density and health. If the value falls below a critical level, a donation payment will be triggered. If vegetation remains healthy during the monitoring period, the user can reclaim their funds and redeploy them in the next campaign, thereby maximizing impact.

The donation amount varies based on county-specific profiles influenced by historical 30th, 50th, & 80th percentiles for Kajiado (1.45, 1.47, & 1.51) and Laikipia (1.54, 1.59, & 1.64). The chosen profiles exhibit a gradual increase from the 80th to the 50th percentile, resulting in a 20% donation, followed by an accelerated increase to 100% donation between the 50th and 30th percentiles, reflecting the increasing severity of drought conditions and the greater demand for financial support. The donation profiles for the two counties are depicted below.

Deposits will be automatically split 50/50 between the two programmatic escrows created for each region. Consequently, the released donation amount represents the average between the payouts for these two regions.

Example: If the outcome is 1.44 for Kajiado and 1.59 for Laikipia, then 60% of the deposited funds will be disbursed as a donation and 40% will be reclaimable by the depositing user. If the outcome is 1.45 for Kajiado and 1.54 for Laikipia, 100% of the deposited funds will be released as donation. No donation is released if the outcome exceeds 1.51 for Kajiado and 1.64 for Laikipia.

๐ŸŒง๏ธ Anticipatory aid

The observation period Q4 2023 represents the rainy season, followed by a dry season. This is where the anticipatory nature of the pilot comes into play. If during the rainy season, rainfall falls below the critical threshold, as implied by the donation profile, donations are triggered, providing vital financial support for the upcoming, more challenging dry season.

โ›“๏ธ Benefits of using smart contracts

One of the key benefits of utilizing smart contracts is that aid is swiftly delivered in response to reported conditions without requiring manual intervention. Other advantages include transparent donations and an open, permissionless approach that allows participation from anywhere in the world with any amount at minimal cost.

๐Ÿ€ Participate now

To participate in the campaign, head over to DIVA Donate and deposit any amount of USDT to support pastoralists in Kenya in the event of drought.

Note that you will need a Metamask wallet, a small amount of MATIC to cover the transaction costs on Polygon (which are minimal), and some USDT. The team is working on enabling donations in fiat to abstract away the complexities involved in interacting with blockchain applications.

๐Ÿ† Rewards

As a token of appreciation, donors will receive a digital certificate known as a POAP to commemorate their contribution. Donations of $75 or more will receive the golden-ring POAP. Smaller contributions will be rewarded with the silver POAP.

๐Ÿ’Ž Join the cause

The DIVA Donate team is actively seeking partners who share their vision of harnessing blockchain technology to launch parametric conditional donation campaigns. Given the versatile nature of DIVA Protocol, the donation payout can be linked to virtually any metric. If you represent a charity or NGO passionate about this concept, reach out and join forces to provide more efficient and effective support to vulnerable communities worldwide.

๐ŸŒ” Conclusion

DIVA Donate's partnership with Mercy Corps Ventures is a testament to the transformative potential of blockchain technology. By providing anticipatory cash transfers to pastoralist communities in Kenya, this initiative not only showcases the power of blockchain but also demonstrates the profound impact it can have on improving the lives of those in need. Join DIVA Donate and MCV in this endeavor to make a positive difference in the world.

About DIVA Technologies AG

DIVA Technologies AG is a Swiss based software consulting firm focused on applications related to the DIVA Protocol, a smart contract-based system co-founded by the CEO of the company, Wladimir Weinbender, to enable peer-to-peer conditional payment agreements. In particular, DIVA Technologies AG is the developer of the DIVA Donate platform, a conditional donation platform that allows users to donate to ongoing campaigns in a transparent, trustless, and cost-effective manner.

About Fortune Connect

Fortune Connect Limited is a microfinance institution in Kenya, providing credit, insurance and other non-financial services to 50,000+ customers in Kenya including smallholder farmers, female micro-retailers, and youth in the mobility industry.

About Shamba Network

Shamba Network develops an oracle for the collection, analytics, and use of ecological data on-chain. Through the Shamba oracle, smart contracts get updated on what is happening in real time and use this data to trigger a wide variety of actions. Shambaโ€™s oracle relies on satellite data to monitor vegetation levels in a given area.

About Mercy Corps Ventures

Mercy Corps Ventures (MCV) invests in and catalyzes venture-led solutions to increase the resilience of underserved individuals and communities. Founded in 2015 as the impact investing arm of Mercy Corps, MCV supported 43 early-stage ventures to scale and raised over $396.7 million in follow-on funding.

๐Ÿ”— Links

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