The Waislitz Global Citizen Awards are annual cash prizes totaling $250,000 that recognize the excellence of individuals in their work to end extreme poverty. The grand prize is $100,000 with three additional prizes at $50,000 each, for a total of four prizes. The awards are presented by the Waislitz Foundation and Global Citizen, and in 2020 are supported by the leading US and Australian based cellular medicines company, Mesoblast Ltd and global fund management group Paradice Investment Management Pty Ltd.
“Ending extreme poverty is not a choice, it's an obligation. My hope is that it will inspire many thousands of people around the world to do what they can to improve the living standards of those in dire need," Chairman and Founder of the Melbourne-based Waislitz Foundation, Alex Waislitz.
The Waislitz foundation exists to create a positive social impact locally and globally through innovative projects that empower individuals to meet their full potential and make a measurable difference to the world.
The 2020 Waislitz Global Citizen Awards featured four awards totaling $250,000.
In addition to the cash prizes, the four winners will be profiled in editorial pieces that will be featured on the Global Citizen platform and social media.
Please note, due to COVID-19, there was no award ceremony in 2020.
All applicants were evaluated based on individual merit, including the following five key areas:
The grand prize Waislitz Global Citizen Award was awarded based on the 5 criteria listed above.
The Waislitz Global Citizen Disruptor Award was awarded to an individual who excels in the “Disruption” criteria.
The Waislitz Global Citizens’ Choice Award was selected with input from public online voting by the Global Citizen community.
The Waislitz Global Citizen COVID-19 Response Award was awarded to an applicant who excels in the “Adaptability” criteria and has implemented a specific adaptation, pivot or new program that addresses the impacts of COVID-19.
Safe Motherhood Alliance | Founder and CEO
The winner of the Waislitz Global Citizen COVID-19 Response Award and a $50,000 cash prize is Muzalema Mwanza, Founder and CEO of Safe Motherhood Alliance. Her organization distributes birth kits and trains birth attendants in Zambia, and is manufacturing PPE during the pandemic for frontline healthcare workers including 3D printed masks and face shields.
Charlot Magayi, founder and CEO of Mukuru Stoves, is an eco-entrepreneur on a mission to eradicate household air pollution in Africa. With over 5 years’ experience in the cookstove industry, Charlot believes in a world where every household is smoke-free and has dedicated her time, skills and knowledge to work towards achieving this dream.
Koketso Moeti saw the potential of cell phones to amplify the voices of poor women and hold government accountable. Working to turn every cell phone into an active citizenship tool, Koketso founded amandla.mobi, a movement of over 200,000 active citizens across South Africa who campaign against poverty.
Wilma Rodrigues, founder and CEO of Saahas Zero Waste believes in persistence and practicality. Wilma has had a diverse career path – from being a tour guide and German language translator in the eighties, to a business journalist in the nineties, and for the past 16 years a pioneer in the Waste Management Industry. When not at work, Wilma likes to spend her time planting and nurturing trees, making compost and being around family.
Clarisse Uwineza, whose Environmental Protection and Organics organization focuses on converting organic waste into fertilizer in Rwanda, said that her project will “help reduce waste and empower farmers to produce more food.” Her BIORGOFERT project converts bio-organic waste into an environmentally friendly and clean fertilizer.
Twesigye Jackson Kaguri, the director of Nyaka AIDS Orphans Project, won the 2015 prize for his work in making education more accessible to AIDS orphans in Uganda. This includes developing schools but also helping the women - or “grandmothers” as he calls them - who raise these orphans.
Anoop Jain, the founder of Humanure Power, won the 2014 prize for his work in rural India building sanitation facilities. Anoop believes that building toilets addresses the underlying causes of poverty, which affect broader health, social, and economic change desperately needed in India.
What is Global Citizen?
Who is Alex Waislitz?
Who is eligible to apply?
Can I nominate someone for the Awards?
Are the prizes for organizations as well as individuals?
Do you only accept non-profits?
I have a lot of great ideas, but am just starting out. Am I eligible for the Awards?
What does the judging criterion “Global Citizenship” mean?
When does the application open? When does it close?
Can I apply in a language other than English?
What is the evaluation criteria?
What is the grand prize and how is the winner chosen?
What are the additional prizes and how are the winners chosen?
What is the judging process?
What happens if I am a semi-finalist?
What weight does the public vote have in determining the Waislitz Global Citizens’ Choice Award winner?
When will I find out if I am a winner?
If I am a winner, do I have to spend the award money a certain way?
Is there an awards ceremony?
Where can I ask questions not covered here?