Peer-to-peer charity online service. Deliver help through a local ambassador.
How it works: you wanna make a donation to the people in need. You don’t want to send money to huge organisation because you think that 10 dollars wouldn’t make a difference and you’re not sure where exactly these money would go. You wanna see who gets your help and how. Yeah, it might be selfish but it works this way. Imagine that you have a website where you can find a person you can trust that would buy on your behalf some food or clothes etc. After all is done you see a photo or video proof. Satisfaction.
Problem: There are 4 billion people in the world having less then 5$ a day. Half of them make only 2.5$. 800 million have less then 1.25$.
Numbers are slowly decreasing but the problem is obvious. Top 10% of adults from rich countries hold 85% of the world's total wealth.
Poor people live in a constant pressure to make a living. The world is a connected organism. Poverty leads to lack of education, depression and no professional growth. This is a fertile ground for crime, drugs, epidemy, terrorism etc. This isn’t something happening somewhere but concerns everyone. It is not only our duty to lend a hand and help others but also the way to keep the world in peace. The price of a coffee cup could provide one family to survive for few days. But it’s not only about survival, it is about adding a bit of dignity to life.
There are many organizations and individuals helping to fight poverty but it is still not enough. More people should be involved in helping. One of the obstacles is impersonalisation. When you send money to big charity organizations you don’t see who receives help and how exactly your money would be spent. And this is not about mistrust. We just want to see the immediate and particular result of our actions.
Solution: Direct help to poor people by hiring local mediator who would deliver targeted support on your behalf.
There are more and more people in developing countries with access to internet. These people are more educated and willing to improve life around themselves.
I made a little experiment after visiting one of those poor countries. I used a website that allows you to hire people around the world for little part-time jobs. I made an inquiry to take money from me, buy some food and give it to the poor. 8 people from different countries submitted. They all done good job and sent me video and photo proof. Half of them declined reward and thanked me for the opportunity to help. Unfortunately that website blocked me because they don’t do charity. Also they took around 30% commission. That’s how I came up with the idea of a service created specifically for that peer-to-peer help.
Below is the detailed but raw description of the website or an app. I share it freely and don’t mind anyone use it. It can be a website or a part of bigger system — already existing charity website or part of social network.
Search. Standard searching engine.
Become ambassador link. A page where a person can register to become an ambassador. A registered user should provide personal information, photo, address, passport, video about himself, some story about himself, links, email. Answer to questions: why I would like to help, whom I’m going to help, where I will help, what would I buy to help them etc.
Community link. Kind of forum where everyone could create topics.
Messages link. Correspondence with other users/ambassadors.
My help link. History of actions made by user.
In progress link. List of donations that are paid but not done yet.
Profile/Login/Sign Up link. Profile: Personal info. Name. Photo. Description. Links to social networks. List of donations made. Payment method. Settings.
Balance link. Showing your current balance: you can add money to your account and keep them. If for some reason ambassador didn't make it money would come back here.
How does it work. A page with a description of the idea, maybe video+text.
«Recent help» feed on the left. Randomly chosen previews of recently accomplished donations. With photo preview and country flag above. Pictures changing every now and then.
«Choose your ambassador»: Randomly chosen 4 ambassadors with high rating, we can see their profile preview with country, photos, rating and number of deliveries. Each ambassador is an active link leading to this ambassador’s page. Link to open «ambassadors page» by the number of all ambassadors.
«Choose the place»: Four most popular countries (by number of active ambassadors). Each of the four countries is an active link, leading to this country page. Link to all countries by the number of total countries in system.
Create inquiry link. «On your conditions». Create your specific inquiry and wait till ambassadors would offer their help. E.g. you may wish to buy teddy bears or toothbrushes for kids.
«Donate to fund»: Link to subscription page. Link to one time donation page.
Links: fb, inst, tw etc.
Here are lists of ambassadors that user can sort by: latest delivery, best rating, new people, most deliveries, type of help: health, school, food, clothes, education etc, randomly generated list, online now etc. We can see their profile preview with country, photos, rating and number of deliveries. Search by name.
A picture of the ambassador. All presonal info. List of deliveries s/he made. Options (ambassador may create different types of actions - buy food, buy clothes, bring water to distant village etc for different price). Reviews of the ambassador from other people. Comment’s section.
Choose the place Page.
Here is a list of countries. Sorted by number of ambassadors. When you click on country, you go to this country page with description of the situation in general, statistics etc. Country page may be divided into regions. Each region has description as well. Below is the list of ambassadors from that country/region that could be sorted as in «Ambassadors page».
User can describe specific task, describe conditions etc, choose reward he’d pay to ambassador for execution. Ambassadors can respond to it and deliver inquired help.
Donate to fund.
This one is created for big donators, who don’t have time to search and choose. They put money into fund. Fund are used by experienced users (eg those who successfully inquired 5 times). Experienced user can take some amount of money from the fund to hire ambassador with it. After delivery is done, report goes both to experienced user and a person who donated big sum of money.
One time donation. You transfer amount of money to the fund.
Subscription. You subscribe for a monthly donations, you can choose the amount.
ADDITIONAL INFO AND IDEAS
TopUp function. Bigger and complex solutions. Works like crowdfunding. Many ambassadors could execute complex projects, like making a water supply for a little village, or installing solar panels etc. Experienced ambassadors could create that kind of projects. Users can top them up until the needed amount of money is collected.
System's fee. I guess that there should be some % taken from donator to the needs of the system. There would be some people working on it, plus website hosting etc. I would also save some extra money to help the ambassadors, to prize them with new mobile phone or a camera for good work.
Ambassador's fee. Each ambassador should get paid for his job. This is an important part of the project because it gives a possibility to make some money for passionate, educated people in poor countries. This people are changing the society around them and it is very important to support them.
How do you know that ambassador won’t cheat. 1. People usually cheat incognito. Not much scammers are ready to do their scam openly. 2. The amount of routine people have to go through to register as ambassador must be tiresome for them - they wouldn't pass through it. 3. It's too much to do to imitate help: you have to find people, find bags of food or clothes, make photos, upload it. Too much to-do. 4. Don't underestimate the spread of information. I am sure that scammer at some point would be revealed - someone would write a complaint. Even poor people use internet. 5. Reputation. Everyone cherish their reputation. The system should make sure that scammers would be always remembered. 6. Even if people cheat and use money for themselves it isn't too bad. They also have families, they also wanna eat. At least they wouldn't still or rob. Maybe their lives would change, imitating too good deeds makes kind of pressure on conscience. 7. Donators should always check proof materials and make complaint if they feel fraud. 8. Ambassador should give us data - to whom, where, when, what has been given. Cheques to prove that food has been bought on the same date etc. 9. Very active ambassadors could be checked after 50 (or 20, or 100) donations - we could find local trustee who would meet this person, or spy etc. 10. The last thing. I believe in unconditional trust. People usually better then we think.
How do you know that money would be spent on those who are in real need. Local ambassador usually know much better what their people need. They know someone personally who is in bad situation.
Don’t you think this poor people would never begin to do anything because they can get used to free money. First, I am a big supporter of the idea of a basic income. I think people could live much better not thinking about making money to survive. I believe they would do much more in the end. Second, it is not their choice to be poor. Usually, these people were born in poor families in poor environment. If we give them a chance to quit the rat race or ease it a bit, people would send their kids to school, would be nicer to them, children wouldn't have to make money from the early age on primitive work etc.
Why do you think that poor people need help.
What about taxes.