$100M Sustainable Village Water Systems Proposal Clears First Hurdle

Maureen Langlois Wells to Wellness

In June, the MacArthur Foundation issued a broad challenge: come up with an innovative solution to a big problem facing humanity, and we’ll give you $100 million to make it happen.

Well, we have one. The Global Water Institute coordinated a proposal for the Sustainable Village Water Systems Program that integrated 13 international partners across two continents on behalf of hundreds of rural villages in Tanzania. Watch our proposal video here.

The proposed program presents a new integrated approach to tackling the combined issue of water, food and energy insecurity that plagues hundreds of millions of people around the world. Using advances in solar power, mobile communications and groundwater monitoring, the program catalyzes economic activity that pulls communities out of poverty and away from dependence on foreign aid.

In early December, the team was informed that the GWI proposal made it through the first round review at the MacArthur Foundation. Many others were not so lucky: of the 1,904 proposals MacArthur received, only 800 advanced to the second round review. Now, judges will narrow the field to 10 finalists to be announced by late January.

Good luck to the team!