Bitcoin Beach, the bitcoin-focused project giving residents of a modest beach community in El Salvador unprecedented access to financial autonomy, is driving a global fundraiser to build a surf and community center in honor of Kathy Díaz, a member of the national surf team who was struck and killed by lightning while training.
The team signed its first-ever paid contracts in March, which were denominated in sats and funded by Bitcoin Beach. After consulting with Díaz’s family, the Bitcoin Beach team launched the campaign to build a permanent surf training and community center for the team, which will be funded entirely in bitcoin and named after Díaz.
“In a moment of darkness, there is an opportunity to create a positive, to lift up a team that has never had the support it deserves, and to create the world’s first national sports team that Bitcoiners around the world can champion,” according to a press release from Bitcoin Beach shared with Bitcoin Magazine. “Bitcoiners the world over have an opportunity to show the values that we care about, that real Bitcoin adoption can and is happening, and showcase the power that Bitcoin has to bring meaningful change to those who most need it.”
Bitcoin Beach hopes to raise 10 BTC (roughly $550,700 at the time of this writing) so that it can secure the land, build the facility and maintain a budget for ongoing maintenance. Any additional funds that it secures will go toward the Kathy Díaz ESA Surf Travel And Training Program, which will help the national team travel to global competitions.
Bitcoin Beach will collect on-chain bitcoin donations via the Cash App $Cashtag $katydiazmemorial from external bitcoin wallets, as well as via bitcoin donation management platform Engiven. It will collect Lightning Network donations through Strike, which has been working with Bitcoin Beach and recently launched for download in El Salvador. Fiat can be donationed via the $Cashtag as well. Once the fundraiser is complete, the bitcoin will be distributed to the Salvadoran Surf Federation’s non-profit.
The initiative already has a significant number of large donations lined up, including $100,000 worth of bitcoin from Cash App, $50,000 from Strike, $25,000 from Bitcoin Beach, an undisclosed amount from NFL athlete and Bitcoin proponent Russel Okung, as well as $25,000 committed from Bitcoin Magazine.
As the Bitcoin Beach project itself continues to demonstrate, Bitcoin is a powerful financial tool as well as a technology that engenders community and activism among those who use it. This fundraising campaign is another chance for Bitcoiners to demonstrate that and for the magical internet money to once again affect meaningful, tangible change in the lives of those who need it.