The United Nations (UN) has recently partnered with the Stellar Development Foundation to initiate a digital cash disbursement system empowered by the Stellar network. This technologically advanced system is equipped with Circle’s USDC, Vibrant, and MoneyGram International capabilities to ensure the swift and secure delivery of aid for those suffering from poverty worldwide, offering unprecedented on-chain traceability and accountability. The plan was revealed through a press release by the Stellar Development Foundation (SDF).
Thus, despite the chaotic macro environment in the crypto industry this year, blockchain technology is still finding innovative and beneficial use cases. A prime example is Ukraine’s adoption of cryptocurrency and blockchain as an alternative financial route when traditional channels fail. Massive adoption of digital assets can be encouraged by demonstrating that even amid the crisis, there are opportunities to grow through new technologies.
UN to directly send USDC via Stellar
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) plans to send funds to Ukrainian refugees and internally displaced persons in the rescue project through USDC stablecoins. As mentioned on their website, they are already taking advantage of Stellar Aid Assist, which allows them to provide financial assistance directly via USDC to qualified Ukrainians.
Qualified Ukrainians can sign up with a certified relief organization and receive help through the Vibrant Wallet. Then, they can exchange the digital currency for real money at any MoneyGram branch. Since the Ukrainian banking system is in disarray due to war-related issues, many citizens cannot send or get funds normally.
Together with Stellar and Vibrant, United Nations has devised an approach that will transfer funds more quickly than before — all while cutting down costs as well. Ukrainians no longer need to worry about bank accounts or credit cards; they may now instantly benefit from financial aid without them both.
With Stellar and the International Rescue Committee (IRC) working together, 33 out of their 100 goal individuals were reached within December alone. The IRC is an NGO that aids those affected by political, religious, and ethnic conflicts. By 2022’s end, these two entities will reach every individual they initially set as their objective.
Stellar Aid Assist showcases the power of blockchain technology
Karolina Lindholm Billing, the UNHCR representative to Ukraine, addressed her enthusiasm for the Stellar Assist project during a speech. She pointed out that this groundbreaking initiative could help thousands of individuals struggling in war-torn areas of Ukraine; additionally, she expressed gratitude towards the United Nations (UN) and IRC for selecting Ukraine as an ideal testing ground for this powerful project.
David Miliband, President, and CEO of the IRC applauded the trial run of the Stellar Aid Assist project. He remarked that their partnership with Stellar has provided them with innovative methods to send cash assistance to Ukraine through blockchain technology — an exciting development.
Stellar Development Fund, Ukraine’s lifeline?
Denelle Dixon, CEO and Executive Director of Stellar Development Foundation (SDF), proudly proclaimed:
We are dedicated to providing equitable access to the global financial system. We know that cash-based interventions can be a lifeline for vulnerable populations.Denelle Dixon, SDF CEO
SDF will acquire essential items while also providing freedom, power, and honorability. The collaboration with International Rescue Committee is pioneering the future of aid delivery on the Stellar Network through the program ‘Stellar Aid Assist’.
With Stellar Aid Assist, transferring money to those in need is a secure and straightforward process. Every transaction step can be monitored immediately, discouraging potential theft or misdirection of funds while providing complete transparency for all contributors.
Why the Ukraine war needs to end
The conflict in Ukraine, which began in 2014, is ongoing. It is a conflict between the Ukrainian government and pro-Russian separatists in the eastern region of Ukraine, known as Donbass. The conflict has resulted in thousands of casualties and has displaced many people.
According to the United Nations, as of November 2021, the conflict has resulted in over 13,000 deaths and has displaced more than 1.4 million people. The situation in eastern Ukraine remains tense, with intermittent fighting and ceasefire violations being reported.
In addition to the human casualties, the conflict has had a significant impact on the economy and infrastructure of the region. It has disrupted trade, damaged infrastructure, and led to economic losses for both Ukraine and Russia. The conflict has also had a destabilizing effect on the region and has strained relations between Ukraine and Russia.