Venuste Kubwimana, International Transformation Foundation, wins Global Innovator of the Year Award
Aid & International Development Forum is delighted to announce the winner of the Global Innovator of the Year Award 2018 at the 10th Anniversary AIDF Global Summit taking place on 5-6 September in Washington D.C.
The Global Innovator of the Year Award 2018 celebrates individuals as well as teams who have introduced game-changing initiatives, created research or inventions that have made an impact on the humanitarian aid and development sectors over the past year.
The aim is to recognise individuals for their inspiring leadership, forward-thinking, creative problem-solving and implementation of innovative programmes that have helped drive progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals.
The nominees were judged on their inspiring innovation, proven impact and success. Nominees were also expected to exhibit a thoughtful, creative and innovative approach to resolving humanitarian and development challenges over the past year.
A shortlist was released in August.
The winner, Venuste Kubwimana, Secretary General, International Transformation Foundation, was chosen as the award winner because of his work in providing school children in Kenya with safe and clean drinking water, thereby preventing school drop-outs. It is estimated that across Kenya only one third of people have access to safe water in their home.
The runners up are Scott Beale, Atlas Corps and Anil Regmi, Smart Krishi Nepal.
“I want to dedicate this award to young people; especially those in villages like where I grew up, I want to encourage you to have a little faith in your dream and take a small step forward. You will be amazed by what will happen after that first step. We can make our villages better than we found them!”
Venuste and his team launched a school based water kiosks project, where students manage businesses selling clean water to community residents at an affordable price. As a team they finance community schools to set up on-site water kiosks with designed and sustainable products for children to transport water to their homes straight from school. A water kiosk at school is both educational and profitable, teaching students business and entrepreneurial skills. It also generates much needed income for schools
To date Venuste and his team have established 10 Water Kiosks across 10 schools/ communities in Kenya, meaning that 4815 school children no longer absent from school to secure water for their families. They also have improved sanitation and health at their schools; 73,087 people have access to clean water at an affordable price in their communities.
The successful social business model has developed community solidarity. Profits are directed to developing local education and an entrepreneurial spirit among the youth. Consequently, they were invited by Rwanda Government to replicate the project in Rwanda.
The project aims to replicate the kiosks in other areas of Kenya and in countries across East Africa. They also plan to hold an annual conference for all schools running a water kiosk business to share their experiences and create a network of community-based social enterprise.
“I am privileged to be receiving AIDF Global Innovator of the Year Award. This is a dream come true validation for me. I am earnestly grateful, because every other nominee was as capable of winning this award”
Find out more about the AIDF Global Summit here.