In a move showcasing the possibilities of the virtual realm merging with tangible world projects, Upland, a renowned metaverse platform mapped to real-world locations, is paving the way for charitable endeavors in the digital space. This time, the focus is on ensuring that children across historically disadvantaged neighborhoods have access to playgrounds. Metaverse’s in-game map assets, akin to NFTs, play a pivotal role.
Metaverse meets philanthropy: Upland’s unique approach
Upland’s latest charitable initiative revolves around supporting KABOOM!, an American non-profit dedicated to constructing and renovating playgrounds. With a legacy spanning over a quarter of a century, KABOOM! boasts of having built or rejuvenated over 17,000 playspaces.
The core idea stems from an evident alignment in missions. As per Danny Brown Wolf, the Chief of Staff at Upland, the objective to eradicate playspace inequity struck a chord with the Upland user community. The metaverse, which often mirrors the desires and aspirations of its participants, became a potent medium to address this real-world issue.
Thanks to the proactive involvement of community members – or ‘Uplanders’, as they’re fondly termed – KABOOM! was able to collaborate with the Upland management team. This joint venture will manifest in a unique fundraiser where the metaverse’s in-game map assets, akin to NFTs, play a pivotal role.
For the uninitiated, these map assets in Upland function much like NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens). Users of the platform can procure a range of assets: from land parcels and houses to apartments and an array of virtual decorations to personalize their virtual habitats.
Playgrounds for a cause: The NFT sale
Embracing this model, Upland is launching an exclusive NFT playground collection consisting of 1,800 NFTs. The sales from these NFTs will be channeled directly to KABOOM!, although Upland will retain a nominal 10% transaction fee.
A fascinating aspect of this endeavor is the visibility of the minting process. Participants of the metaverse can witness an in-game representation: a factory diligently producing these virtual playgrounds. This engaging spectacle is scheduled to commence on Thursday, with the first wave of sales rolling out by Friday.
Adding a touch of community-centric authenticity, the NFT playground designs emanate from an Uplander with graphic artistry prowess. Danny Brown Wolf mentioned that there are five distinct playground designs within the collection. Upon purchasing, users can seamlessly integrate these playgrounds into their virtual backyards, elevating their personal metaverse experience.
Upland’s legacy of virtual philanthropy
While this initiative with KABOOM! has generated substantial buzz, it’s not Upland’s maiden voyage into the realm of charitable causes. In December of 2022, Upland married philanthropy with festivities, collaborating with UNICEF Brazil. The campaign was oriented towards bolstering UNICEF Brazil’s youth program, a noble endeavor to equip young adults with the competencies related to the metaverse and Web3, priming them for prospective roles within the industry.
Just as seasons transition in the physical world, so do they in Upland. Celebrating the winter spirit, Upland introduced an array of ornaments and winter gnomes, which users could acquire to embellish their virtual homes. This was soon followed by another heartwarming initiative in February, directed towards providing relief to the victims of the devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake that shook the landscapes of Turkey and Syria.
These winter-themed sales collectively garnered a remarkable $89,692, as informed by Wolf to Blockworks. Wolf’s perspective on these initiatives is truly visionary. Drawing parallels with the contemporary digital landscape, she noted that most impact-driven organizations today have dedicated teams managing social media campaigns, including platforms like GoFundMe.
The metaverse, often seen as a space for leisure, gaming, and social connection, is beginning to carve out a niche in philanthropy, with Upland leading the charge. By harnessing the engagement and vastness of this digital realm, initiatives like the one supporting KABOOM! have the potential to make palpable changes in our physical reality.