UNICEF wants you to mine crypto to help them raise money
UNICEF Australia uses crypto mining to raise funds for aid programs.
There have been several attempts made by organisations wanting to mine cryptocurrencies. Some have been illegal, like a hack on government websites used to mine Monero, while others, like the popular media outlet, Salon, are asking readers to let them mine coins rather than have readers view ads.
So, it's no surprise that fundraising efforts are looking at similar tools.
UNICEF Australia has launched The HopePage. The website says it will allow Australians to donate by using "an advanced donation mechanic", or crypto mining, that takes advantage of spare processing power to mine for cryptocurrency.
Of course, the idea is that by donating surplus CPU cycles you're helping to make the world a better place.
The system works by visiting the site and then clicking on the "Start donating" button. It uses Coinhive to mine Monero which is deposited to UNICEF's wallet. They convert the cryptocurrency to cash and use that to fund various aid programs.
Jennifer Tierney, UNICEF Australia’s Director of Fundraising and Communications said, “We wanted to leverage new emerging technologies to raise awareness about current humanitarian crises and raise funds to support children caught up in them. The HopePage allows Australians to provide help and hope to vulnerable children by simply opening the page while they are online.”
The mining only operates per session and you can choose how much processing power to dedicate by moving a slider. The mining operations don't start until you choose a percentage and then click a "Confirm" button. The minimum you can allocate is 20% and the maximum is 80%. The mining only continues for as long as you keep the mining page open.
In my quick testing, I allocated The HopePage 75% of my CPU resources. It never exceeded that level while I was watching the activity monitor on my Mac. When I closed the page, the activity ceased and processing returned to normal.
Of course, cryptocurrency mining is not free. Those extra CPU cycles translate into energy expenditure which does costs something unless you've got excess generation happening on your solar panels. And, unlike traditional donations, the cost of that power isn't tax deductible. So you'll need to weigh up whether the cost of creating cryptocurrency is a better option than simply opening your wallet or swiping a credit card.
Disclosure: At the time of writing, the author holds XLM, BTC, ETH, EOS, NEO and XRP.
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Picture: UNICEF Australia