Social impact startup All_EBT has announced its partnership with blockchain platform Telos.
All_EBT empowers communities by giving them access to the digital economy to shop online for healthy food and savings. Supported by funding from Draper Associates, EOS, and Facebook, the social impact startup offers a virtual food stamp card that has helped 10,000 low-income people use EBT for online grocery orders and deliveries.
Telos is a high-capacity network and the second most active blockchain platform in the world according to Blocktivity. Telos features a robust, third-generation blockchain governance system including advanced voting features and smart contracts that can be fully configured to meet the needs of any developer. Telos also supports the blockchain ecosystem by serving as an incubator and accelerator for decentralized applications.
As part of the partnership, All_EBT will bring its public assistance solution to the Telos blockchain to add another important purpose-driven project to their community. Telos will reportedly help All_EBT scale its virtual food stamp card sevice to millions of Americans, making it easier to facilitate payments between public assistance programs and digital food couriers like Doordash and Instacart.
“The Telos blockchain will be used to create an immutable record of EBT data, which will make it verifiable, auditable, and trackable for users, merchants, and the government,” All_EBT said. “This will improve trust in the system while lowering costs and preventing fraud.”
All_EBT Founder and CEO Eli Calderón Morin said that in America alone, more than 22% of the population, 54 million people, live on food stamps. According to Morin, that number has gone up over the last several weeks and months amid the COVID-19 pandemic, making it even harder for people on food stamps to access healthy food and financial services.
“We believe that technology should help solve everyday problems for under-served communities first,” Morin said. “Now even more so, All_EBT is helping families access basic financial services and healthy food through its online shopping platform for food stamps so that they can stay safe.”
Suvi Rinkinen, CEO of the Telos Foundation, said that other than inertia, there has been an unwillingness of public entities to move food assistance programs to digital because they have not developed an easy way to do things like verifying recipients, verifying purchase eligibility, and preventing fraud and other abuse.
“Blockchain can help fill in all of those gaps,” said Rinkinen. “The inability of those most in need of food to apply assistance toward safer options right now like online delivery is only deepening the social divide, weakening society’s safety net, and creating unnecessary health risk.”
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