WHERE IT BEGAN
Vihara Foundation (VF) is a US 501c3 registered, non-profit organisation founded in 2009 by United Nations Retired Ambassadors and Sustainable Development Professionals. Since its inception, VF’s mission is to undertake business and scientific modeling to address scalable poverty alleviation and climate mitigation.The non-profit nature of VF’s project development saw the need to find alternative funding, beyond government grants. In December 2010, VF launched the Rock against Poverty (RaP) campaign as an innovative fundraising platform bringing together global music, art, fashion and sporting events.
RaP transitioned through a series of United Nations branding: at 2011 UN Earth Day Commemoration and by UNESCO New York Chapter at the 2014 General Assembly Sessions. In 2011, Vihara Foundation received offers and support for RaP development from major music industry alliances such as the Jimi Hendrix Foundation in 2014. In 2015, RaP partnered with an Australian tech-startup, Metavents (initially to make planning their charity events more efficient). However, it became clear that Metavents could help in delivering humanitarian projects funded through RaP, and so began a new chapter.
Metavents was originally designed to solve communication, planning, logistics, risk and financial problems faced by outdoor music festivals by using 3D Visualization, Virtual Reality (VR), Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Blockchain. Imagine a real-world SimCity that you could go inside of. It was later found, these capabilities also solve problems for organizations involved in disaster management where what is required to plan, deliver and manage a refugee camp are mostly identical to that of a festival. Both involve coordinating the delivery of food, water, shelter, power, waste management systems, medical and sanitation facilities into remote and often difficult to access locations, while planning for and mitigating risks such as high wind, flood, fire, etc.
Together VF and Metavents have developed a new methodology for planning, funding and executing humanitarian projects. The British Virgin Islands recently became the first country to pilot the RaP model and we’re currently developing projects in India, Philippines, and the Caribbean. In 2019, RaP seeks to launch in 25 locations around the world to raise one billion dollars, annually.