Hurricanes, earthquakes, tsunamis: bad things. We are gripped globally for a few news cycles, then we move on.
What else are we supposed to do?
As I sat in my hotel room in Mexico City watching news of the earthquake in Nepal, I thought the answer was nothing. Just like it was for 9/11, Katrina, the tsunami, Haiti. I sat feeling sorry us, for our helplessness. I tried to imagine what it might be like to buried alive, and I despaired anew that we live on a planet where this can happen.
Then it dawned on me: do something. Your sympathy is worthless to people in need without action. I walked over to my computer, started an Indiegogo campaign called Entrepreneurs for Nepal, emailed friends, and launched on social. Within two days, we raised $35,000.
People started reaching out. One of them was Reuben. He suggested uniting the hackers, from their #Hack4Good movement, to help. Their goal: to unite developers to hack a way to rapidly spread our link out to the world. As Reuben and I discussed this, we realized that we were running an experiment with potential. We decided to unite for Nepal and change the name to Entrepreneurs, Hackers and Artists for Crisis: EHAC.
The mission is to make us all feel less helpless.
The vision is to translate sympathy into action in times of crisis.
The strategy is to do this via:
- a leaderless, de-centralized organization
- harnessing global awareness into trustworthy, impactful financial contributions
- by decreasing friction to giving globally via the rapidly evolving social web
Why should we do this?
Because the hard-working organizations on the ground don’t have time,. Because global outpouring of sympathy is enormous during a crisis, but not enough is translated into help for the victims. Because we cannot afford potential energy that loses its kinetic potential because too much is lost to friction.
The social web, crowdfunding, innovations in payment currencies and mechanisms, and increasing internet access makes it possible to capture more kinetic energy. The result, if we are successful, will be a growing global community of Entrepreneurs, Hackers and Artists who can act like a government in times of Crisis — making a huge impact by giving a huge sum to people who need it.
Imagine a world where when bad things happen, more help comes way faster than it does today. Imagine a world where when you feel bad for people facing calamity, you can do something about it and the aggregated impact of contributions like yours means we rescue and rebuild faster and stronger than we ever have before.
If you believe such a world is possible, invest with us today in rebuilding Nepal, and get ready to do so again when calamity strikes.
If you don’t do this, that’s cool.