Friday 17 January 2014 10:50 am

The world's best charity is now accepting Bitcoin

The charity that provides a wealth service to the poorest in Kenya and Uganda is now accepting Bitcoin.

Give Directly is a pretty unique specimen when it comes to charities. It gives a cash transfer to a recipient, expecting to put 93 per cent of a donation into their hands.

At the end of 2012, it'd spent just $30,000 to cover IT, registration and reporting, and staff outreach.

When it comes to sourcing recipients, Give Directly has perfected a scheme which maximises reaching those it's trying to help.

It's so effective that GiveWell – a nonprofit dedicated to finding the most effective ways to give – rank it their top charity.

Having used census data, along with housing criteria, to locate poor families, it transfers donations electronically to a recipient's mobile using the M-Pesa transfer facility.

They're then free to use the money as they see fit. 

Recipients reporting back on what they've spent their money on have preferenced buying food, paying school fees, home improvement, buying land and livestock, and clothing.

Give Directly already accepted donations through several channels, including tinyGive and Venmo, along with stock donations.

But from this week, it's taking donations in Bitcoin. It says:

You can donate bitcoin through our Coinbase payment page. Bitcoins are automatically converted into dollars and transferred into our US bank account. You’ll receive an auto-generated receipt from Coinbase and a separate tax receipt from us.