The Litecoin community has raised over 120 Litecoins for the Gò Vấp Orphanage in Vietnam. That's about $1500 USD! The goal of 100 LTC was met on February 25 when Charlie 'Coblee" Lee donated 50 LTC. Here's their charity project video.
The Vietnam Volunteer Network will assist in transferring the funds to Gò Vấp. They work to raise funds and support the Gò Vấp Orphanage, helping to support orphans, many with Agent Orange related illnesses including hydrocephalus, malformations, and physical & mental disabilities, as well as children injured by landmines. Gò Vấp is a government owned orphanage that receives funding from the government.
This may have odd dynamics in Vietnam, however, as the State Bank of Vietnam has prohibited all Bitcoin transactions in early February. This means that it is illegal to use or own bitcoins. The official statement by the State Bank of Vietnam stated Bitcoin's uncontrolled nature as a main point in its decision to ban. It reads:
"The documents of the General Department V (Ministry of Public Police) show that the use of Bitcoin will cause a lot of negative impacts, say, the failure of control by the functional agencies, thus creating an environment of operation for all kinds of crimes with a lot of hidden risks for the Bitcoin users."
No official legal statement has been made, yet.
Bitcoin gained huge attention in Vietnam in early January during the major rise in prices. The ban on Bitcoin has since been widely ignored and many Vietnamese bitcoiners are still trusting in cryptocurrencies despite and somewhat because of Mt. Gox's demise.
Bitcoin has attracted many of the youth which say they would like to 'try' it. Many of its advantages is that BTC has low transaction fees compared to financial institutions in Vietnam and is simpler to use. Also, Bitcoin's system and protocol is trusted more than banks there.
This project is currently working towards publication in Thanh Nien News. Thanh Nien, the flagship publication of the Vietnam National Youth Federation, has become one of the Vietnam's most prestigious and influential newspapers. With over 2 million reads per week, it is one of the most circulated newspapers in Vietnam.
This was the second major charity project to be taken by Litecoiners: the first one being to support the Eden Projects in forest restoration.
Charlie 'Coblee' Lee, attributed to the creation of Litecoin, now works at Coinbase.
As a Vietnamese-American, this story touched my heart and for that, I must thank the Litecoin and CryptoCurrency community. Also, a thank you to Tom Vanhoutte for the news tip. It's always great to show the public the charitability of the crypto-community.
If you would like to contribute, here's the LTC address:
Last modified (UTC): February 27, 2014 10:31 PM