World Water Day: Global Water Challenge and Ashoka's Changemakers Tap Local Solutions to the Water Crisis

    Online Competition Galvanizes Innovations

    WASHINGTON, March 20 /CNW/ -- Global Water Challenge (GWC) and Ashoka's
Changemakers invite everyone to join "Tapping Local Innovation: Unclogging the
Water and Sanitation Crisis," an online competition to discover and support
entrepreneurs with groundbreaking approaches to the world's water and
sanitation challenges. Also today, director of Oscar-winning films, Elizabeth
and Elizabeth: The Golden Age, Shekhar Kapur launches a blog on inspired by his latest film, Paani ("Water"), which will
examine the daily struggle for water in the slums of Mumbai.
    "In celebration of World Water Day, we join today all social innovators
from around the world who are making access to clean drinking water and
sanitation a reality," said Ashoka's Changemakers Executive Director, Charlie
    Innovators must submit their entries by March 26, 2008. The GWC is
pleased to announce that upon the close of the competition, selected entries
will be invited to submit proposals for funding consideration. With a gift
from The Coca-Cola Company, US$1 million in grants is available from GWC to
implement innovative entrepreneurial approaches that further its mission of
universal access to water and sanitation.
    More than 100 innovations have already poured in from 35 countries. For
example, in Sudan, an innovator has launched a bartering system to exchange a
local natural resource for water treatment equipment that radically reduces
waterborne diseases. A Nigerian entrepreneur creates cheap, clean, and
sustainable energy from human waste. Anyone can review entries and get
involved through open online discussions.
    "We have both the resources and the will to live in a world in which
everyone can drink clean water and use a safe toilet," said Paul Faeth,
Executive Director of GWC. "This competition is showing the impact that social
entrepreneurs working in the farthest corners of the world can have."
    Global Water Challenge is a coalition of leading organizations, which
have joined forces to catalyze transformational change in the water and
sanitation sector.
    Ashoka's Changemakers is building an "open source" online community that
competes to surface the best social solutions to the world's most pressing
issues. To date, Changemakers has attracted more than 2,000 solutions from
more than 125 countries.

    CONTACT:      Tito Llantada
                  Ashoka's Changemakers
                  (703) 600-8257

For further information:

For further information: Tito Llantada of Ashoka's Changemakers, 
+1-703-600-8257, or Web Site:     

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