This week’s guest on the Cardano SPO Column is a stake pool that was launched at the end of February to help refugees from Ukraine: Help Pool [HELP].
Last week’s guest was a stake pool created in the UK to help contribute to the decentralization of the network.
This initiative is a point of reference for everything Cardano and every week or two we will invite a Stake Pool Operator (SPO) to answer some questions and give us an update directly from within the Cardano community.
Considering that many of our readers are new to the crypto space, we will have a mix of simple and technical questions.
Cardano SPO, interview with Help Pool [HELP]
Hi, thanks for your time. Tell us something about yourself, where are you based and what is your background?
Thank you for sharing your platform with us.
My name is Guzmán Etcheverry. I am originally from Uruguay and for the last 7 years I’ve been a missionary in Fazenda da Esperança. A Christian therapeutic community born in Brazil in 83’ now spread through 22 countries around the globe with 150+ houses. We help people that have lost their direction and that ask willingly for help. We live together as a family in “farms” of up to 150 members in Brazil and as little as 5 in Belgium/Poland. I started our house in the Saint Elizabeth of Hungary Monastery in Nysa, Poland in September of 2017.
Previously I was a business owner and manager for 15 years but that “rat race” got to me and eventually broke me. I fell in bad times and this community is the one that helped me through my personal hell and into life again. I decided I wanted to help others like some stranger helped me.
How did you discover Cardano and what has captivated you about its vision?
I got back into investing in 2018 but it was clear I wasn’t looking for a “heartless” kind of investment. I wanted my resources to also be fuel for positive change. I never thought I’d get so deep into it.
Crypto presented itself as a great new/young opportunity. In my eyes it had, and still has, the potential of a paradigm shifting force. It is not a make money fast scheme. For me it is about supporting a future structure, a better one. I sometimes think about those masons or architects, “mecenas” and donors, kings and queens, that helped build the big Cathedrals in 14th century Europe. All knew they were not going to see a finished product, those were 50-200 years projects, but they did it for something greater. Yes, the glory of God, but also for the future generations. Sometimes I feel like a little mason setting up a cornerstone in a marvellous Cathedral.
Cardano is 80% of my portfolio and I’m not budging. The philosophy of the Community, and of Charles as an individual and businessman, is really fascinating. The dichotomy in the market between what Cardano appears to me and to detractors. I like the uphill battle. I like that it is not just to make some ephemeral money. I like it is really focused on hard problems. I like the feeling of family.
You launched this stake pool specifically to help refugees from Ukraine, tell us more about this initiative.
I was contacted by Paddy on Twitter after he saw my initial tweet posting the relief fund wallet addresses. He asked me if I wanted to start a Cardano pool and that 100% of the rewards would go to fund that wallet. I have no technical expertise so he said “I have the servers, I have the knowledge. I’ll set it up for you”. And that is how HELP started. He is also the creator of PoolPeek and, together with TradingWithPaul, Building on Cardano.
The Pool will generate passive income and for us IRL a constant stream of funding. The big idea is to only touch those funds as our FIAT depletes. It is all being done in a very transparent way, those funds are not to be touched until needed. In case we manage to support all the work being done without using them, eventually it will all go to several charities connected to Refugee Aid.
What are your thoughts about this invasion by Russia? How do cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology fit into this context?
About the invasion and conflict I have a very clear position, IT IS BAD. I really do not care about the geopolitical games and moves behind the curtains. Our only focus is to help the real victims of war, the displaced persons and destroyed families.
Blockchain and cryptocurrencies have shown the world that they are a very real and viable alternative to legacy financing and banking. We, and several others, are living proof of it.
I wish you good luck! Any final thoughts? Where can people find you?
Thank you again for lending us your platform. You can all make a big impact through donations to our wallet address in $ADA and NFTs that will be auctioned every month or so. We are having our first Charity Auction on Saturday the 5th of March at 6pm UTC. I’ll be there together with The Hidden Order through their Twitter Spaces. I hope to see you there. Our $ADA wallet address:
Disclaimer: The opinions and views of the SPOs are their own and do not necessarily reflect those of the Cardano Foundation or IOHK.