Grace is an Ethereum-based donation platform that aims to drastically increase the exposure and donations for any fundraising campaign at no upfront cost. Here’s how it works.
What Is Grace?
Grace, found online at GraceToken.org, is a blockchain technology built on Ethereum. The goal of the platform is to enhance the efficiency of fundraising campaigns at no upfront cost. That means increased exposure and donations for any campaign.
How does Grace plan to achieve that goal? The company uses “economically incentivized Advocates” to help spread the word about a particular campaign.
Basically, an “economically incentivized Advocate” is an individual – like a celebrity on social media – who will receive a cut of the donation money in exchange for spreading the word on social media.
Grace just recently completed the pre-sale for its Grace Tokens. The company’s crowdsale is scheduled to begin on December 1.
What Problems Does Grace Seek to Solve?
The Grace whitepaper describes the current state of charity fundraising as “broken”. Today, most charities suffer from problems like fraud and corruption, difficulties in talent retention, and tacit social stigma in resource allocation (i.e. a social expectation to keep overhead costs low).
These issues combine to mean that most non-profit organizations are not operating at their full potential. Campaigns are expected to minimize costs while maximizing benefits. Too many charities end up doing neither very effectively.
Grace aims to solve these problems using a decentralized solution to maximize exposure and maximize value output.
How Does Grace Work?
Grace’s central technology is a proprietary smart contract-based incentive mechanism built on the Ethereum blockchain. This smart contract promises to vastly improve the way charity fundraising campaigns are managed, as well as the way donations are made.
Grace allows organizations to delegate promotional work to incentivized network users known as Advocates. Organizations don’t have to pay these Advocates upfront. That means a charity can leverage the power of social marketing to scale limitlessly.
Advocates, on the other hand, can browse the Grace network to find campaigns that fit their interest, experience, and skills. Then, after they choose a campaign, they can use their unique mechanisms to spread the cause. Advocates are compensated for their work by receiving a percentage reward of the donations as set by the campaign creator.
Ultimately, Grace expects professional social marketers and influencers to make up a large portion of the Advocate network. Someone with a large Instagram following, for example, may be able to make a considerable amount of money through Grace.
Meanwhile, donors can make monetary contributions to a fundraising campaign directly on the Grace platform. All transactions are securely stored on the Ethereum blockchain, and each donation is held in a smart contract until release conditions are met. These conditions are specified in detail during the creation of the campaign, and donors can review all conditions once the campaign is live – so there’s complete transparency in the donation and fundraising process.
A smart contract can be customized to release funds at certain campaign milestones, for example. Once the beneficiary meets those milestones, the Grace smart contract can release further funds. This allows the donors to audit the flow of money
How Does Grace Verify Beneficiaries?
You may be reading through this and thinking that it would be really easy to set up a scam on the Grace network. Someone could pose as a charity and attract funds, then disappear.
The Grace whitepaper specifically addresses this issue. There’s an entire section dedicated to beneficiary verification.
Grace will ask each beneficiary to submit information verifying their identity. This information will be used to ensure that each beneficiary is a genuine representative of the charity, and they’re not a scam artist masquerading as the charity.
To do this, Grace uses a multi-stage verification process that includes:
Grace sends an email to the address submitted.
Grace makes an automated call to the phone number.
Grace generates an HTML meta tag with a unique hash value that only the applicant of the verification can see. The application needs to include the meta tag on the main website – say, the homepage for the Red Cross, if the Red Cross is applying for verified status with Grace.
Contributors to the Grace platform can perform manual checks on a beneficiary in a number of ways, including performing online searches, calling the phone number submitted, or visiting the physical address.
How Do Grace Tokens Work?
Grace tokens (GRCE) will be used as a token of exchange on the Grace secured platform. GRCE is an ERC20 token built on Ethereum.
Tokens can also be used for Grace products and services, including:
- To pay for fundraising campaigns
- To pay for featured campaigns (the Grace platform will have a limited number of “featured” campaign spots available)
- To distribute auction revenue (featured campaign spots are auctioned off each day, and GRCE tokens from the winning bids are sent to the Grace reserve)
- To reward Advocates for their work
The Grace Token Sale
The total supply of Grace tokens (GRCE) is permanently fixed at 120,000,000 tokens.
There will be a total of 96 million GRC tokens available for sale during the crowdsale. The tokens will be sold at a rate of 1 ETH = 3,000 GRCE.
The token sale is scheduled to begin on December 1.
Who’s Behind Grace?
One of the unusual things about Grace is that the company doesn’t list its team members or any information about its contributors. This is intentional, and the reason for this has been explained on Medium by the company.
The reason for the anonymity is simple: some Grace team members are still under a binding non-compete clause with their previous employers, and they wanted to avoid any legal complications. Grace is careful to note that “the entire Grace team is in full compliance with all outstanding binding agreements” – they just wanted to minimize the risk of complications.
The last of the binding periods will end in early 2018, at which point the company plans to make team member information public.
Grace, by the way, made its team information public when the company first launched, but the information has since been removed.
Grace Token Conclusion
Grace is a blockchain-based platform that aims to change the way we conduct fundraising campaigns. With Grace, charities can incentivize “Advocates” to collect donations on their behalf at no upfront cost. Basically, Advocates (i.e. social influencers) receive a portion of all donations in exchange for their work. The charity gets more donations and more attention – all while providing a small cut of donations to the Advocate.
The terms of the agreement can be customized with a Grace smart contract. Charities can choose how much they want to give Advocates, for example. All terms are fully viewable to donors, and the platform aims to be as transparent as possible.
The Grace ICO is taking place at the beginning of December. You can learn more about the project online today at GraceToken.org.