On December 21, 2017, Covenant House, an organization that helps homeless children and youth, surpassed a fundraising goal nearly three times over in the form of Ether donations.
The "Merry Merkle Tree" event for Covenant House, which saw a Christmas tree hooked up to the Ethereum blockchain, initially sought to raise $25,000 at the event; when Ether was donated, the tree would light up. It didn't take long for the donations to pile up from all over the globe, and in total, the event raised over $70,000 worth of Ether. The donations are enough to feed 100 people for three months, according to event staff.
Event organizer and Truebit COO Robbie Bent, alongside other cryptocurrency traders, decided to pay forward some of the relative wealth they had accumulated after a year of big gains in 2017.
"We noticed there's [sic] a lot of people who made a lot of money this year in this space and a lot of people who have a real desire to give back. We thought this would be something cool that was just fun for a really good cause. Our community just wanted to try it out, and the results were really, really awesome."
Executive director of Covenant House Bruce Rivers expressed gratitude to the members of the ecosystem who helped make the event a success. "We're very grateful to the blockchain community and excited about this new opportunity to raise funds for our agency through cryptocurrency."
The festivities for Covenant House are far from finished; it plans to raise an additional $200,000 over the next 15 days.