Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Relief 2.0 - Finance Mechanism an important component

I applaud what is emerging from Recovery 2.0 an "opensource disaster recovery initiative." The discussions I've read so far seem to miss one key link which is the financing infrastructure required to facilitate money flow from donor countries to other countries requiring recovery.

In the post-911 charity finance reform environment, the rules and liability on registered charities when funding projects outside of their own country are very onerus. The challenge the Recovery 2.0 builders must embrace is how to build a system which allows individual donors to financially contribute to projects in a country requiring relief, whilst allowing them to claim the donation for tax-purposes and providing sufficient financial accountability. I recognize that the mandate is not to build a donation portal but surely a system that handles money flow is a fundamental "core feature"

What we need is some form of micro-credit "citizens bank" which consolidates donations and then handles distribution of funds to intended recipients in partnership with the local financial institutions of the countries requiring relief and local ngo's.

Just a thought..

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