Oxfam Ireland received $1.1 million in grant from the European Commission for a Blockchain project, the Irish Times reported.
The charity has been built with Australian start-up Sempo to pioneer a decentralised model of providing aid using distributed ledger technology to recipients affected by disasters to make it more efficient, transparent and sustainable.
According to their official website, Oxfam is a global movement of people who won’t live with the injustice of poverty. Together we save lives and rebuild communities when disaster strikes. We help people build better lives for themselves. We speak out on the big issues that keep people poor, like inequality and discrimination against women.
It is understood that the new grant will allow Oxfam to scale the programme across the Pacific region to test how effective it is in meeting the needs of vulnerable groups there, and to explore whether it might be of use in other areas such as sub-Saharan Africa and the Caribbean.
It is built on the ethereum platform and delivered in partnership with ConsenSys, a company founded by Joe Lubin, a co-founder of the blockchain technology. It uses a software platform to deliver smart vouchers to recipients who can use them to buy essential goods at local vendors.
It has further been reported that the project has been able to reduce delivery times for aid to recipients by 96 per cent and cut transaction costs by 60 per cent compared to past programmes.
The Oxfam project is one of six to receive combined funding of €5 million through the European Innovation Council “blockchains for social good” prize with some 176 applications received from 43 countries for the competition.