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On enrolling over 50,000 families

GiveDirectly started in 2008 as an idea in the minds of a few graduate students and a handful of documents. Many thought the idea of giving out money unconditionally to aid the poor was doomed to fail.

Recently we enrolled the 50,000th household in our history and wanted to take a moment to mark the milestone. With a rough estimate of 4.8 people per household that means we’ve helped more than 240,000 individuals; more than the population of a place like Salt Lake City. It’s a humbling achievement that has been made possible by the many who are a part of this story:

  • Our early supporters — friends, family, and mentors — who understood the vision that cash was a more effective and efficient form of aid than other interventions and helped get the ball rolling.
  • Institutional partners like Google.org, Good Ventures, BSZ, and many others who have given millions of cash as well as their time, energy, and support.
  • Organizations that help donors make more informed, evidence-based decisions, such as GiveWell, The Life You Can Save, Giving What We Can, Effective Altruism Australia, and Charity Science.
  • Research organizations like IPA and J-PAL, who are implementing groundbreaking studies to grow the evidence base that surrounds cash interventions.

Most importantly, we’d like to thank the thousands of donors like you who’ve chosen this way of helping the poor. You’ve made a positive impact on the lives of people who truly need it.

On behalf of the program participants we serve: Thank You.