IRI Receives $25k Grant from Community Fund and Landmark NFT-based Donation
For Immediate Release: May 26, 2021
Media Contact: Dave Lee – Dave@irioc.org
ORANGE COUNTY, CA — May 26, 2021 — Today, Integrated Resources Institute received a $25k grant from a new community fund organized by a groundbreaking new partnership between the Stand With Asians grassroots movement and Endaoment, a community foundation and the first cryptocurrency-backed 501(c)(3) nonprofit public charity.
The grant will be used to develop educational training opportunities that can lead to a better understanding of how important it is for Asian Americans with Autism and other I/DD to gain access to meaningful lives within their community, with an emphasis on employment.
The Stand With Asians Community Fund is intended to provide support to the Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) community, and was seeded by an initial donation of $660,000 in cryptocurrency (263.5 ETH) from renowned digital artist Pplpleasr's March auction of a non-fungible token (NFT). This initial donation has been distributed through separate grants throughout the month of May based on applications from across organizations serving the AAPI community.
“We’ve identified groups that can make an immediate impact within the AAPI community,” said Tian He, co-founder of Stand With Asians. “We have a preference for smaller nonprofits and grassroots organizations as they are more likely to be underfunded and can act more quickly to identify the areas of greatest need.”
The fund reflects an innovative new approach to philanthropy, which harnesses the wave of momentum behind cryptocurrency, NFTs and a growing desire within the cryptocurrency community to support charities and important philanthropic causes.
"There is a lot of money in the cryptocurrency space right now so if there is anything I can do to help funnel some of that to help those in need, it would be my way of showing allyship as well as inspiring positivity towards the NFT space," said Pplpleasr.
Stand With Asians, Endaoment, Pplpleasr, and the NFT-auction facilitator Uniswap are working together to identify and distribute individual grants to the winning community groups and nonprofits.
“We are proud to partner with Stand With Asians and stand up against oppression of the AAPI community,” said Endaoment President and CEO, Robbie Heeger. “It’s gratifying to realize that, through Endaoment’s technology, we can provide cryptocurrency donations in a simple and efficient way to groups that are in need of timely assistance.”
Individuals in the general public will also be able to contribute to the community fund in over 150 cryptocurrencies. As more funding is raised by the broader crypto community, more grants will go out to organizations who applied for the grant program. Grant recipients are required to provide a 3-month report of the grant’s impact on the community they serve.
About Integrated Resources Institute: Integrated Resources Institute (IRI) believes that people with disabilities should LIVE, WORK and PLAY in integrated community settings. Where people work, live and play should be based on individual choice. IRI supports and advocates that our participant’s wages are commensurate with non-disabled co-workers. Since 1987, IRI has facilitated the employment of over 20,000 persons with significant disabilities in the USA and Australia.
IRI’s MentorWorks service promotes a mentoring approach for employers, that results in superior inclusion and retention outcomes for workers with disabilities. As a result of this approach, workers with disabilities are successfully integrated into the regular work force and have a retention rate that averages 300% better when compared to non-disabled co-workers.
In 2014 IRI is began Supported and Independent Living Services. IRI believes, regardless of disability and/or needs, that every person has the right to live in a home of their own with the supports needed to live the life that they choose.
IRI has been providing educational consultation to families and school districts to develop programs that fully include students with disabilities in their home school regular education setting and transition to integrated post-school community work. IRI also provides Professional Development to professionals and agencies committed to providing integrated work and inclusive education services to persons with disabilities.
About #StandWithAsians: Stand with Asians is a grassroots organization that drives awareness of the challenges facing the Asian American and Pacific Islander community. It was formed after a friend of cofounder Tian He was brutally stabbed in the back in Manhattan’s Chinatown simply for being Asian American. Channeling their hurt into action, a group of friends decided to organize a day of action on March 26, which activated elected officials, influencers/celebrities and business leaders across the nation with 12 hours of live streaming content and 24 hours of audio content. For more information, please visit https://www.standwithasians.com/
About Pplpleasr: Pplpleasr is a digital artist known for her collaborations with DeFi protocols such as Aave, Sushiswap, Yearn Finance and more. In the past, she has worked on movies such as Batman v Superman, Wonder Woman as well as the Diablo IV cinematic. Most recently, she is known for her work on the Uniswap v3 animation.
About Uniswap: Uniswap is a protocol for trading ERC-20 tokens on Ethereum. It removes intermediaries and unnecessary forms of rent extraction, allowing for fast, efficient trading. Uniswap prioritizes decentralization and security above all. The protocol has facilitated over $135bn in trading volume, and is the most popular application on Ethereum (by transaction count). Uniswap ranks as one of the largest cryptocurrency spot exchanges in the world.For more information, please visit uniswap.org
Endaoment is a California Public Benefit Corporation based in San Francisco, federally tax-exempt under Internal Revenue Code section 501(c)(3), serving as decentralized finance’s Community Foundation. It provides Donor-Advised Funds through its web-application, enabling users to donate any major crypto to nearly any U.S. nonprofit. By creating a robust DeFi Community Foundation entity, Endaoment hopes to encourage the charitable giving of cryptocurrencies and the adoption of cryptocurrency technologies by nonprofit organizations. For more information please visit app.endaoment.org.