African projects win in the Global Resilience Partnership innovation challenge
08-10-2019 13:00:00 | by: Bob Koigi | hits: 7995 | Tags:

African projects from Kenya, Uganda, Mali and Ethiopia are among the 16 winners of The Global Resilience Partnership (GRP) innovation challenge whose focus is surfacing resilience solutions across Africa and Asia.

Challenge winners receive three months of technical advice, mentoring and leadership training to nurture their resilience initiatives at the intersection of three strategic areas: Peace & Stability, Food & Water Security and Disaster Resilience.

Winners come from the private sector, international and local NGOs, technology suppliers and research institutes. The GRP Innovation Challenge is funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), which leads international development and humanitarian assistance efforts to save lives, reduce poverty, strengthen democratic governance and help people progress beyond assistance.

“The global challenge to eliminate hunger and poverty is becoming increasingly concentrated in fragile and vulnerable regions, where increased extreme weather events and political instability are common. Making progress will require us to support organisations with innovative and proactive resilience-based approaches suited to complex, volatile and uncertain contexts,” said Deon Nel, CEO of the Global Resilience Partnership.

Every $1 spent on proactive resilience building saves at least $3 in humanitarian assistance, yet only $1.30 is spent on pre-emptive resilience building for every $100 spent on reactive humanitarian aid. Similarly, less than 10 per cent of climate finance reaches fragile states, despite them facing the greatest risks.

“Vulnerable communities desperately need new approaches to avoid or at least pre-empt looming threats such as food shortages, conflicts or disasters, as well as better to prepare for when they do happen. By finding better and more inclusive ways to do this, we potentially address both the underlying causes of catastrophe as well as relieve suffering when it happens,” said Jesper Hornberg, Lead on Innovation at the Global Resilience Partnership.

“Global efforts must become more focused on longer-term solutions which multiply the resilience of vulnerable communities, rather than reactively addressing problems after they have happened. This way of thinking is clearly found in the work of the GRP Innovation Challenge winners,” added Nel.

The winners of the Innovation Challenge:

Food & Water Security

• Association Pro Milk Mali: Healthy Milk for Mali from Mali

• Danish Red Cross: Ethiopian Rainwater Harvesting Ecosystem & Blended Financing Facility

• FarmBetter: FarmBetter

• Global Parametrics R&D: F-cubed project: Forecast and Financing for Famine (F^3)

• M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation: Building resilience of fishing communities using ICTs for promoting sustainable fishing and environment practices in coastal and marine ecosystems.

• SMART Sustainable Safe Water (S3W) Global Crowd Service Platform: SMART Sustainable Safe Water (S3W) Global Crowd Service Platform

• Water Governance Institute: Promoting Solar-powered Integrated Fish and Crop (Aquaponics) Commercial Farming among Refugee and Host Communities in Uganda

• Savia Atmospheric Fountains & Rivers: The Discovery of Ice being Atmospheric

Peace & Stability

• Rainbow Resources Lanka (Pvt) Ltd:  Local business for peace and stability

• Great Vision Research and Consultancy (GVRC) Limited: Community Enterprise Development Impact Bond (CEDIB) for Climate Resilience in West Pokot County of Kenya.

Disaster Resilience

• Amal: Puntland Environmental Protection Effort (PEPE)

• Atma Connect: Catalyzing a Paradigm Shift: Community-Based Disaster Risk Reduction At Scale

• Tuklas Innovations Lab (under Plan International): SolveX38: Intelligent Flood Warning and Monitoring System

• Youth Innovation Lab: Disaster Information Management System for Resilience

• Lutheran World Relief: Climate Resilient Women Entrepreneurs “Sakchham Mahila Pariyojana"

• The Resurgence Urban Resilience Trust (Resurgence): DARAJA (Developing Risk Awareness through Joint Action)

Winners were assessed on the potential of their innovation to build long-term, inclusive resilience.

This Innovation Challenge follows the successful implementation of two previous challenge rounds, consisting of 21 projects focused on similar goals.