Vitalik Buterin – Ethereum co-founder has been quietly supporting a DAO that raised $8 million in cryptocurrencies for Ukraine. When Alona Shevchenko learned that Russian President Vladimir Putin and his army were about to invade Ukraine, she was afraid. Shevchenko, a 28-year-old Ukrainian living in the United Kingdom with family in Ukraine, first learned of the planned invasion on Jan. 19 from a friend connected to Ukrainian intelligence.
She protested in front of the Russian embassy in London for weeks. On February 21, she posted a blog piece about the war in Ukraine to let others know what was going on.
Shevchenko, on the other hand, isn’t your average person. She’s a key member of a number of well-known DAOs in the crypto business, and she has pals who are as well.
On the same day, she published her blog post, Shevchenko and two friends from Pleasr DAO, which collects art, held a group chat to discuss the potential of starting a DAO dedicated to raising money for Ukraine.
DAOs are blockchain-based communities without a single administrator. The DAO’s rules and governance are written in smart contracts and cannot be changed except by the DAO’s members. Each DAO has its own set of objectives and missions. It’s like a group chat between friends with decentralized power and a shared money account.
Shevchenko’s three-person group chat swiftly grew into the Ukraine DAO, which drew thousands of members to its Discord, a popular crypto-community messaging platform. The Ukraine DAO raised almost $8 million in less than a month for organizations and individuals assisting Ukrainians affected by the conflict.
Along the process, some well-known members of the crypto world got engaged, including Vitalik Buterin, the Russian-born co-founder of the blockchain that powers Ethereum, the second most valuable cryptocurrency, and Buterin’s father, Dmitry.
“I am incredibly thankful to him for taking the time to speak with me and for all of his support and sensitivity,” she added of Buterin. “I never expected to speak with him.”
According to Shevchenko, the Ukraine DAO has raised roughly $8 million so far
It has distributed about $7 million to various organizations, including Comes Back Alive and the Ukrainian government. Crypto wallet transactions can be viewed on Ethereumscan, a site that displays them. The Ukraine DAO wallet now has $383,000 that has yet to be donated.
“Overall, I’m really pleased with how things have been handled,” Shevchenko added, “, particularly in terms of funds allocation [and] distribution.”
PartyBid, a platform that allows people to pool capital together to buy NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, as a group, reports that the DAO raised $6.7 million from selling pieces of an NFT of the Ukrainian flag. Ownership of the NFT was divided proportionally among the contributors of ETH to the NFT’s winning bid.
Shevchenko estimates she devotes roughly 14 hours a day to her work in Ukraine. She rarely leaves her home.
“I didn’t sleep for the first four days following the invasion,” Shevchenko added. “The war in Ukraine is practically a fight for our right to exist; it’s a life-or-death situation.”
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