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Kids Unlimited received a $15,000 donation for its food shows, from the crypto kingdom

An image from the Supermegastudios Facebook page shows the NFT used to fund a $15,000 donation to Kids Unlimited. [Courtesy image]

An image from the Super Mega Studios Facebook page shows the NFT used to fund a $15,000 donation to Kids Unlimited. [Courtesy image]

Kids Unlimited in Medford received an unexpected $15,000 raise Thursday to help with the more than 2,000 meals it provides to local youth daily.

The donation was unexpected in several ways. An infusion of funding for the meal program was not on Executive Director Tom Cole’s radar, to say the least.

Even more surprising, however, is that the donation came through the sale of a form of cryptocurrency known as NFTs, the first such donation for the local nonprofit.

Non-fungible tokens, also known as NFTs, are artificially scarce digital objects created by using blockchain technology to mint “unique” versions of digital works of art, sports memorabilia, famous photographs, and anything else that can be digitized, according to the Associated Press. .

Converting them to NFTs involves placing an ownership statement on a blockchain, typically the ethereum blockchain, which creates a permanent record of “ownership.”

The $15,000 given by check to Kids Unlimited on Thursday came from the sale of an NFT by Super Mega Studios, which recently auctioned off a GalaKnights collectible as part of an exclusive release.

“Kids Unlimited is the first beneficiary of our NFT launch and we believe it represents the future of social philanthropy,” said Josh Pierce, founder of Super Mega Studios, who helped deliver the check to Kids Unlimited on Thursday. “It’s the perfect blend of progressive programming and progressive purpose.”

Cole said the source of the donation, coming from an NFT designed to support charitable efforts, was a perfect fit for the organization, which is committed to educating and enriching the lives of local youth.

“We have never received a gift from the world of cryptocurrencies before, and it is inspiring to imagine the future of funding in this area,” he added.

“We are constantly trying to evolve to program the present and the future, and this gift certainly welcomes the opportunity for both.”

Cole said the gift would help cover the costs of meals provided to local students at Kids Unlimited sites and after school programs.

“After seeing what we offer here, they were really impressed and especially liked the level at which our food program serves children. We serve 2000 meals a day which are freshly cooked meals. We have 600 students that we serve in our charter schools now. We do breakfast, lunch and dinner for all those kids, and we serve our sites after school, over 200 kids there,” Cole said.

“The actual number is greater than 2,000, but 2,000 is a good low estimate.”

Cole said poverty levels on Kids Unlimited campuses were significant and that a quality meal program has far-reaching benefits for youth and their families.

“Both Kids Unlimited schools are high poverty. Our Medford campus is 100% poverty. There is some wealth in this valley, but we see some very significant disparities in the economy and a lot of challenges facing our children,” she noted.

“We are grateful to be a part of what we have sought to do for so many years. As we moved into the summer, one of the things that we had as an unfunded part of the food program was supplemental feeding on the weekends for families that may not have access to the same type of healthy meals during the week.” .

Cole marveled at receiving crypto funding for an organization that started when dial-up internet access was “still a thing.”

“We’ve been around for about 25 years and we’ve seen a lot of different trends around funding and so forth, including the kind of evolution of the internet,” he said.

“This gift represents a completely different reality, or virtual reality, if you will, of what is to come. A different reality for business and certainly for philanthropy.”

To donate to Kids Unlimited programs or the meal program, email Cole at tom@kuoregon.org or call 541-774-3900. For more information, visit kuaoregon.org

Contact freelance writer Buffy Pollock at buffyp76@yahoo.com.

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