Women in Blockchain are empowering communities
Since the blockchain network was first introduced in 2008, the approach towards this decentralized database has changed significantly and now blockchain is far beyond merely Bitcoin and trading. Individuals around the world are seeking new ways to exercise the potential of blockchain technology. One of the altruistic means to use blockchain is by empowering communities - be it through worldwide fundraising or the creation of secure digital identities.
Although the circle of women in blockchain business is growing, aside from investment and cryptocurrency trading many female entrepreneurs have been also focusing on using this digital ledger for humanitarian purposes. To celebrate this philanthropic mindset, we are introducing five inspiring women who are leading organizations that use blockchain technology to give back.
Thea Sommerseth Myhren
Today, displaced individuals are challenged by high costs and slow manual processes to verify the authenticity of their skills, identity and credentials. To tackle this challenge, Thea Sommerseth Myhren has created a blockchain-based skill
platform Diwala that allows schools and NGOs (Non-governmental organizations) to verify their educational and personal growth. Myhren is a big human rights and ethics enthusiast, as well as a passionate traveler. Namely her travels and the people she met along the way made her realize how complex and bureaucratic the current structure is.
Through Diwala, people can provide verified proof of personal education and skill level. Myhren strongly believes that using blockchain technology to create a transparent and streamlined system will help to empower democracy, fight corruption and change the power dynamics of data, hence offering freedom and dignity to those in need.
Chris Zhong is the founder and president of a nonprofit organization called Blockchain Philanthropy Foundation. The initiative aims at bridging the gap between technology and philanthropy by enabling and accelerating humanitarian projects and initiatives worldwide through blockchain technology. The organization was launched in 2017 and since then it has recruited a number of volunteers from various different backgrounds.
Zhong thinks that blockchain has the potential to aid humanitarian projects through its cryptographically secure ledger and transparency by preventing fraud and bringing visibility to the whole supply chain.
“I think it is important for us in the technology space to be role models and do something practical to bring the real value of blockchain to the vulnerable communities.”
After she was introduced to blockchain in 2016, Daizy Ozim decided to bring community organizing, public policy and technology together. This is how Blockchain for Social Justice and Resilient Wellness saw the daylight. Ozim's purpose is to challenge such common issues wealth inequality or intergenerational trauma by using blockchain for social impact.
“Blockchain for Social Justice is an education and advocacy platform where marginalized communities have access to developer training. <...>They can learn how to be an investor, like how to read white papers and get a [crypto] wallet, and how to be an entrepreneur, like how to develop their own blockchain. A lot of my work is actually in developing blockchain infrastructure and systems that can help address issues", Ozim said.
Connie Gallippi is the founder and executive director of BitGive, a nonprofit organization that operates on blockchain technology to improve public health and the environment worldwide. Gallippi didn't have any tech background before starting her organization in 2013 but when she saw the blockchain's potential, she came up with the idea of using that potential for nonprofit purposes.
Gallippi has also developed GiveTrack, which helps bring transparency for nonprofit donors by tracking the donated funds and showing how they are spent.
“With blockchain technology, you can actually watch what is happening in real time, and you can see money moving across borders and being used for different things. In the philanthropic world, that is a huge thing, to be able to see the money get there and what it was used for.”
Elle Toussi is a cross-platform journalist and founder of One Minute, an organization dedicated to helping women reclaim their identities through the use of blockchain and reinstating their dignity and independence by granting these women access to basic needs.
“Last year, I found out that more than one billion people don’t have access to proper identification. <...> I realized that the majority of that population were located in vulnerable communities and involved a big number of women. Blockchain can help these communities. By giving someone access to their identification, we can give them access to health care, financial freedom and even work", points out Toussi.
Toussi truly believes that one person can make a real difference - they can empower the whole community.