There’s new evidence giving cash to the poor is more transformative than we thought

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When it comes to poverty alleviation in the developing world, cash transfer schemes have been at the center of a difficult debate. For years, donor agencies and governments were urged to integrate the poor into their economies by providing them with a basic amount of cash. Yet those programs have been dogged by controversies, with critics arguing they encourage dependency, negatively impact labor, and pit community members against each other.

Using evidence collected in eight countries in sub-Saharan Africa over a decade, a new paper dispels some of these common misperceptions about unconditional cash transfers in Africa. The research was conducted through the Transfer Project, a multi-partner initiative that includes the UN agencies for children and food, national governments besides national and international researchers. Unconditional cash transfers, or UCT, are different from universal basic income in that they are time-bound and are given to poor households who make spending decisions consistent with their needs.

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Chuck Feeney, an unconventional billionaire who is revolutionizing philanthropy by closing his foundation

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Chuck Feeney

Chuck Feeney is a self-made billionaire who is an extreme philanthropist. He believes that charity shouldn’t go on forever and his fellow billionaires, from newly minted Silicon Valley entrepreneurs to Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, are learning from his example.

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ALS Ice Bucket Challenge hits 1 billion YouTube views

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Rita Ora does the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

We can call this the summer of the Ice Bucket Challenge with videos of shivering people flooding social feeds around the world. And what a summer it was: we saw epic stunts, epic fails, quirky twists and a whole lot of celebrities. We learned a lot about the strange connections between famous people (Bill Gates knows Ryan Seacrest?). The IBC craze even resulted in a couple of marriage proposals. And it’s all in the name of charity: Since July 29, 2014 the ALS Foundation reported more than $115 million in Ice Bucket Challenge donations.

 

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Benedivz – now you can have webcam sex for charity

Benedivz performers donate a percentage of proceeds to a charity of their choice.

Benedivz has debuted its site where live webcam entertainers broadcast to viewers who buy “helping-handz credits” to see live performances and “requested” activities. Performers donate a percentage of proceeds to a charity of their choice. Benevidz will match 50 percent of their earnings and donate that amount to their selected cause. The company is currently raising $15,000 on crowdfunding site Rockethub for this noble endeavor.

 

 

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Sergey Brin donates half a million dollars to Wikipedia

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Wikipedia just got a big financial shot in the arm.

We’re all used to hearing of über-rich gazillionaires donating to charitable causes like finding cures for diseases and feeding hungry children in Africa. But what about websites? Now you can say that you’ve heard that too, as Google co-founder Sergey Brin has forked over $500,000 to Wikipedia.

The donation is actually from Brin’s charity, the Brin Wojcicki Foundation, which he founded with his wife, Anne Wojcicki. Before these big bucks were sent to the Wikimedia Foundation (the nonprofit that runs Wikipedia), the couple had donated to Michael J. Fox’s fund for finding a cure for Parkinson’s disease…

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India’s Expanding Wealth Boosts Charitable Giving

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Offerings at a Mosque in India

The Malkani family made its fortune selling plane tickets and tour packages to India’s fast-expanding middle class, building one of the country’s first online travel agencies.  Now the Malkanis are among a growing number of successful Indian entrepreneurs blazing another trail: charitable giving.

 

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New World Record Naked Rollercoaster Ride

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Thrill seekers ride naked on the Green Scream roller coaster at Southend pleasure park, raising funds for Southend Hospital

Over 100 theme park thrill-seekers agreed to bare everything on a bare knuckle ride in an attempt to scream their way into the Guinness Book Of Records on Sunday.  The 102 enthusiasts, who stripped off for the ride on the Green Scream rollercoaster at Southend-on-Sea in Essex, were hoping to beat a similar attempt in 2004 by 32 naked riders in Alton Towers, in Staffordshire. (Pics and video)

 

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40 of America’s Billionaires Pledge to Give Half of Their Fortunes to Charity

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The Giving Pledge urges wealthy individuals to give the majority of their money to charities of their choice.

Warren Buffett says he and Bill Gates have pledges from 40 of America’s wealthiest individuals and families to give away at least half their fortunes to charity.

 

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Man Nearly Loses Testicle When Charity Groin Wax Goes Wrong

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Can You Say Ouch?

A man who took part in a charity groin wax was rushed to hospital – after it nearly ripped off his testicle. Builder Joe Cooper, 24, agreed to a ‘back, sack and crack’ to raise money for his local hospital. But he ended up needing medical treatment himself when a wax strip tore off his flesh and missed his right testicle – by just half-an-inch. The freak accident happened after Joe volunteered to take part in the charity fundraiser at the Trees Pub in Birstall, Leics., on June 5.