Our society has invented many effective poverty solutions. Sadly, most of these fail to leave the design lab and factory to reach actual people in need. If we have already created solutions, why does poverty still exist?
The world needs entrepreneurs who can distribute proven poverty solutions in the developing world. Can you figure out a better way to distribute a solar lamp, or vaccine, or any other proven poverty solution to people in need? Pitch your idea to solve one of the challenges below. If selected, we will award up to $20,000 to pilot your new venture in Africa, India, or another other developing region the summer of 2016.
Fletcher Entrepreneurs are answering the call!
SponsorHer!, a social fundraising platform, will ensure the brightest girls receive a high school education through a scholarship program. Their platform mobilizes a network of expatriate mothers and corporate sponsors through an interactive social fundraising website. Founded by Viola Csordas, F’09 and her partner Maria Zandt, SponsorHer! will fund 100 scholarships during a three-month pilot, with a vision to scale to support 5,000 girls in the next two years.
Tommy Galloway, F’14 and Andrew Lala, F’14 received $15,000 to launch Claire de Lune, a solar light distributor platform that uses existing bus infrastructure and cultural remittance practices to reach the rural poor in Sub-Saharan Africa. Andrew and Tommy are bringing this proven poverty solution to 400 families in Burkina Faso. In two years, Fletcher D-Prize believes they will create an enormous impact on the world by providing energy to over 100,000 families living on less than a few dollars a day.
Read more about the Clair de Lune story
How this competition works
Expanded This Year: The Fletcher D-Prize is open to all Fletcher students, alumni, and Tufts undergraduates.
This competition is for people who want to launch a new social enterprise in the developing world. At least one person on your team must be a current student or a graduate of the Fletcher School. Contact Rocky Weitz, Entrepreneur Coach, if you need matching assistance.
If this is you, read on:
Step 1: Review the challenges.
We have already identified several proven poverty solutions that are in need of greater distribution. These challenges will give you a framework for designing your new venture.
Step 2: Design your venture.
The application packet on this website explains what judges want to see. More guidance and tips and is listed on this site too.
Step 3: Submit your pitch.
Concept notes are due by December 7, 2015. Apply directly at d-prize.org/Fletcher. Judges will invite the most promising entrepreneurs to submit a full 10 page proposal by February 2, 2016. Finalists will interview with several judges. Judges will offer up to $20,000 in seed capital in a convertible grant to ventures ready to launch.
Step 4: Book a plane ticket, hire a staff, and get started.
You will spend the next three months using every last shred of ability and talent that you have to start an organization that will grow and change the world.