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The Life You Can Save with Bitcoin and 40 other cryptocurrencies

A man wearing glasses sits on a lounge with his hands clasped. (Source: AP)
Peter Singer's The Life You Can Save charity is now accepting donations in cryptocurrency. (Source: AP)

Crypto-philanthropy is an emerging field that's just been made easier by Australian philosopher Peter Singer’s charity, The Life You Can Save, which now takes donations in bitcoin and in 40 different types of cryptocurrency.

The news comes off the back of the record-breaking $4.9 million gift to international medical humanitarian organisation Médecins Sans Frontieres/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) in October 2021 thought to be the largest known cryptocurrency charity donation.

The donation was realised from a non-fungible token (NFT) project and made in Ethereum (ETH).

Cryptocurrency donations are currently exempt from capital gains tax. This enables donors to maximise their contributions to their chosen charity or not-for-profit.

Crypto-philanthropy tech helps effectiveness

Crypto-giving is part of the “smart giving simple” ethos The Life You Can Save is known for and can be applied to both their own charity or one of their recommended charities. The charity was founded by Singer - a Melbourne-born philanthropist - and was only established in Australia in 2019.

All donations are facilitated by US startup The Giving Block, which was co-founded in 2018 by Alex Wilson and Pat Duffy as a platform to help NFPs accept cryptocurrency donations and allow donors to identify which charities accepted crypto donations.

The Giving Block also facilitated the MSF donation, which at the time Giving Block co-founder Pat Duffy released a statement saying:

“This is the type of transformational crypto philanthropy that gets the world embracing the technology. It’s donors like this that are making crypto the most charitable industry on the planet.”

Three years on from its inception, the Giving Block now offers access to more than 400 non-profits accepting cryptocurrency donations. This is giving crypto donors an opportunity to consider not only how much, but also how to donate.

Billionaires choosing crypto-philanthropy

Wealthy public figures like Jack Dorsey, Elon Musk and Vitalik Buterinhave sent more than $25 million in cryptocurrencies to people in need through charity GiveDirectly who deliver digital funds to the world's poorest people.

The Life You Can Save has edged ahead of the curve of many Australian charities by providing multiple options and opportunities for donors to give effectively without triggering a capital gains event.

Strategic adviser fo the Life You Can Save John Behar released the news in a statement this morning.

“Crypto-Philanthropy is a burgeoning industry with enormous impact potential and we are proud to be on the forefront of it as we seek to improve, or even save, the lives of people living in extreme poverty.”

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