GoodDollar community finds new ways to do good—and do well—with G$

Anna Stone

#defi4good #cryptoforall

GoodDollar has toppled a lot of barriers in its first year (happy first anniversary to all of us!).

Thanks to the world’s first crypto universal basic income protocol, anyone with a smartphone and a network connection can join the digital economy. And anyone with ingenuity and the GoodDollar app can become an entrepreneur, a community leader, or a philanthropist.

We have been staggered by the ideas that have come out of the ecosystem since our launch last year. Staggered, and heartened too. The more our community members increase the usefulness and uptake of G$, the healthier and stronger the token will become—and the more its holders can benefit.

Here are a few of the novel ways people in the GoodDollar community have found for doing good—and doing well—with their G$.

Building a community currency in Spain

Salvador Perez and like-minded neighbors in the town of Albal in València, Spain are putting GoodDollar’s goal of making the reserve-backed G$ a community currency—one used alongside government-issued banknotes in a local area as a means of exchange for goods and services—into practice.

Salvador, an academic and long-time GoodDollar supporter, conducted the first-ever transaction involving G$ (there have now been more than 100,000) when he sold his bicycle for G$5 to a buyer who wanted greater mobility.

Nor did he stop there. He and a group of others in the area have integrated G$ into their collective organic farming operation. Every time a group member takes food for personal consumption, they contribute some G$ to the cause.

Crowdsourcing for higher education in Nigeria

When community member Stephen was in danger of having to drop out of university before completing a structural engineering degree, he turned to the GoodDollar community—and it responded!

Stephen raised more than G$200,000 in a single week through a crowdsourcing campaign. He then traded his G$ for Nigerian naira in a peer-to-peer swap. Equipped with those funds—the equivalent of $43—he was able to continue his studies at the University of Benin City, Nigeria.

Building marketplaces in the virtual world

Travis Miller has been an active GoodDollar member from the very start.

In the protocol’s early weeks, he supported new joiners by creating Telegram groups, writing how-to guides and making direct contact with anyone who was struggling.

He also built the GoodDollar Marketplace, a Facebook venue that allows participants to buy and sell goods and services for G$. The page now boasts 38,000 members and is just one of 35+ community-initiated marketplaces available.

These marketplaces are a vital building block in GoodDollar’s future. By increasing the range of useful goods and services members can buy with their G$, they help our members live better lives and, because of the way the system is designed, simultaneously boost the value of the reserve-backed token.

The hope is that this will create a virtuous circle: greater buzz around GoodDollar leads to faster adoption; more claimers asking bricks-and-mortar vendors in their localities to accept G$ as a viable currency; the eventual acceptance of G$ as a community currency in the neighborhoods where money is hard to find.  

Raising UBI awareness among developers in Brazil

When he learned about GoodDollar and understood blockchain’s potential to revolutionize UBI, Brazilian software engineer, social entrepreneur and crypto evangelist Helder S Ribeiro created a GoodDollar Facebook Marketplace aimed at developers in his country.

He followed this up with the introduction of Garantida, an educational podcast on UBI and the crypto universe. Helder said he focused on developers because they are among the earliest adopters of new ways of using technology and can provide “tech support” to family members who want to claim G$.

Enabling mobile communication in Ghana

GoodDollar ambassador Ishaq Faisal is doing his best to both promote G$ adoption and provide affordable data to community members in Ghana by offering mobile minutes for sale in the GoodDollar Marketplace.

For just G$200 (just $0.17), users can pick up 1 worth of airtime from African mobile telecommunications provider MTN (that’s the equivalent of 3 GB of data).

Feeding the hungry in Israel

Yonatan Ben Ami found a wellspring of generosity in the GoodDollar ecosystem when he opened a G$ account on behalf of Pesia’s Kitchen, a free food outlet in Israel that turns surplus food into nutritious meals for just $0.35 apiece.

Pesia’s Kitchen was under mounting pressure last year, as the COVID-19 pandemic swelled the ranks of the poor. After amassing G$1,427 through diligent daily claims to try and help, Yonatan shared the story of his efforts to help on Facebook.

A benefactor soon stepped up and offered to match Yonatan’s G$1,427 donation with its equivalent in shekels—enough to pay for 1,427 meals. Then the wider GoodDollar community chipped in, and collectively donated enough G$ to pay for another 100 meals.

Helping GoodDollar grow up

That’s just a fraction of the creative ideas emanating from our community. We expect much more to come in the weeks ahead—particularly following the upcoming launch of GoodDollar Version 2.0 and the handover of power to the GoodDAO, a decentralized autonomous organisation run by and for the community.

Innovation, after all, is the lifeblood of GoodDollar and vital to its success.   

As Salvador in Spain said when we caught up with him about his ground-breaking bicycle sale last year: “I look at GoodDollar as a tool for innovation; to build and transform the unjust and harmful economic system under whose shadow we live.”

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