World Bank’s Development Marketplace Awards US$5 Million To Innovative Water, Sanitation And Energy Projects

Titled "Innovations in Water, Sanitation, and Energy Services for Poor People," this year’s 118 finalists were selected from more than 2,500 applications, for their new approaches to the delivery of water supply, sanitation, and energy.

A jury of 43 prominent individuals --senior management from the World Bank and their counterparts from other organizations, such as MIT’s Sloan School of Management, General Electric, and Winrock International, among others chose the 30 winning projects. This year’s Development Marketplace award pool was augmented by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the International Finance Corporation, and Global Village Energy Partnership.

"Winning the Development Marketplace grant has rewarded our determination to help dairy farmers in Kenya," said Muhaimina Said from Rural Milk Collection Center. "Our project uses solar energy to chill and store milk overnight, which the farmers can sell at the market the following day. This is not about making money. Our project gives them the capacity to help themselves and lift themselves out of poverty." Timothy Mwamisa and Carl Erickson were also part of the team that came up with this project, which reaches between 600 and 650,000 people in rural communities, only half of whom have access to electricity.

The two-day Marketplace also provided networking opportunities between the finalists, World Bank staff, other potential funders, and visitors from around the world through organized and informal discussions collectively known as the Knowledge Exchange.

The Development Marketplace started in 1998 as an internal Bank competition to fund innovative ideas that were not picked up through the usual funding system. Over the last seven years it has evolved into a global event that has awarded about US$42 million for 1,000 projects in more than 70 countries through Global Competitions, Country-Level and Regional Development Marketplaces (CDMs).

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