A new initiative seeks to support artists and social enterprises through NFT collections. All hail blockchain tech. By Karen Donald.
Purpose is the first of its kind, an NFT initiative that empowers artists and social enterprises through the sale of impact-NFT collections to people who care.
With 300 NGOs around the world ready to collaborate, Purpose uses the phenomenon that is the non-fungible token so charities can best use them for fundraising.
NFTs have proven to be a game changer for Purpose Founder Okki Soebagio. They are a powerful force for good that has helped raise and donate millions of dollars to both global and local causes.
Launched in September 2021, the serial entrepreneur asked himself: “How do we create something impactful using this blockchain technology?” Because what he saw from blockchain or NFT flipping was mostly for self-enrichment. He secured US$100 thousand by December of the same year to benefit artists and social enterprises in need.
CAN ART CHANGE THE WORLD?
Yes, it can. Take the simplicity of donating crypto to a charity, add the unique beauty of non-fungible art, and mix in the collective enthusiasm of passionate online communities. You get the perfect recipe for charitable giving.
“After matching artists and non-profits through our platform the locally-based team plans a campaign”, explains Okki. “Then, the artist uploads their collection onto our platform. We then mint and execute the campaign to promote the impact-NFTs to the public and supporters.”
“We have created a local dedicated NFT studio in Indonesia’s art hub of Yogyakarta. Artists get all the tools they need, and we train analog artists to become digital or NFT artists”, says Okki. “A team is always ready to create any collection, partner with eco-retailers or non-profits, creating double the impact while expanding consumer reach.”
With his do-good business blooming right before his eyes, Okki set about building a global community of changemakers who create added value through meaningful art. NFTs are a powerful force for social impact, connecting the NFT network with thousands of charities.
WHAT IS AN NFT?
NFT stands for non-fungible token. Non-fungible is an economic term that you could use to describe things that are not interchangeable with other items because they have unique properties.
These unique tokens can be used to represent ownership of unique items. They let us tokenize things like art, collectables, and even real estate. Ownership of an asset is secured by a blockchain, Ethereum, Solana or Polygon – no one can modify the record of ownership or copy/paste a new NFT into existence.
With Purpose understanding that the rest of the ‘charitable world’ might not quite be up-to-speed with Block-chain technology, they have created an ease-of-donation through the usual channels of donating either by debit or credit card directly through Purpose. And through every step of the way Purpose will guide the donator through his/her donation, traceability and ownership of a unique NFT donation, that can be anything between USD10.oo (ten USD) up to a very generous USD1.000.000!
THE KEY PARTNERS
For Okki, their first key partner was brought on board in 2021. Bali based Bye-Bye Plastics Bags launched their first NFT collection totalling half a million dollars and sold 1,400 NFTs within the first three months, using a minimal carbon footprint compared to more traditional merchandise products.
“We’ve teamed up with Melati Wijsen of Youthtopia, a global youth changemaker organisation, and started our first project with Bye-Bye Plastics Bags and Aqil Art to launch Purpose’s first impact-NFT campaign,” Okki comments. “Promoting a cleaner Indonesia and providing support to the hundreds of volunteers supporting this amazing project.”
With the success of their pilot, a second key partner joined Purpose in the same year. Founded in 1949, SOS Children’s Villages is the world’s largest non-profit organisation committed to providing children with a loving family and home. SOS has been in Indonesia for 50 years, providing a family environment and value to 8,000 children from Aceh to NTT. In July 2022, Purpose engaged Indonesia’s top Batik artist Era Soekamto to create a collection of 111,111 NFT’s that is care from $10 to $1 million each from her Adi Manungsa batik collection. Fifty percent of the sales are donated to SOS Children’s Village Indonesia to support their mission.
The biggest use of NFTs today is in the digital content realm. NFTs can really be anything digital (such as graphics, and music), but the excitement is using the tech to sell digital art.
The ownerships of the NFTs are managed through the unique ID and metadata that no other token can replicate. NFTs are minted through smart contracts that assign ownership and manage the transferability of the NFTs. At Purpose, 50 percent of the royalties goes to the NGO, 30 percent to the artist, and 20 percent to Purpose. NFTs are designed to give customers something that can’t be copied.
According to Okki, the Purpose platform uses NFTs for philanthropy since these digital assets represent the voices of charities everywhere. “The main thing we want to spotlight is doing good in all forms. For instance, one of the causes that will be featured in our gallery is an 11-year-old girl, Mia, who wanted to have proceeds go to her dog sanctuary in Bali called Mia Healing Sanctuary”.
This presents an entirely new audience that might be even more generous than investors across other sectors. The trend is giving rise to a crowd that is just more comfortable with donating via NFTs and crypto, be it for tax reasons or because they prefer on-chain assets.
With 10,000,000+ registered NGOs globally and a possible $800 billion a year, Purpose has not forgotten local charities. The company works with Habitat For Humanity Indonesia and renowned architect, Raul Renanda, to develop yet another impact-NFT collection for HFH where the proceeds will be used to build proper houses for the unfortunates. The sustainability movement Plastic Exchange in Ubud empowers communities to change their waste behaviour through dignity-based exchange systems for healthier environments. Half a million dollars worth of NFTs are in the making using the personal art collection owned by the Tugu Hotel Group. In 2023, Yayasan Cinta Anak Bangsa, Solemen, Torajamelo and many other local NGOs or social enterprises within the archipelago will be launching their impact-NFT collection thru Purpose.
It’s a ground breaking, win-win idea, promoted via the social enterprise’s network of supporters and the public, including the artists’ fan clubs, adding a green or socially-conscious positioning to the artists’ public image. These impact-NFTs will no doubt fund positive social, cultural, sustainable development or environmental impact in the future.