Applications Are Closed

Stay tuned for the announcement of semi-finalists in mid-July.



About the Awards

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.

Prize Description

This 2020 Waislitz Global Citizen Awards feature four awards totaling $250,000.

  • $100,000: Waislitz Global Citizen Award (Grand Prize)
  • $50,000: The Waislitz Global Citizen Disruptor Award
  • $50,000: The Waislitz Global Citizens’ Choice Award
  • $50,000: The Waislitz Global Citizen COVID-19 Response Award

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 will not be an award ceremony in 2020.

Evaluation Criteria

All applicants will be evaluated based on individual merit, including the following five key areas:

  • GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP: How does the applicant embody and exemplify the values and practices of a Global Citizen?
  • PROOF OF CONCEPT: Does the applicant have a strong proof of concept with at least 1-2 years of impact towards ending extreme poverty?
  • DISRUPTION: Has the applicant created measurable impact in an innovative manner that disrupts the systems that allow for extreme poverty to exist?
  • SCALABILITY: How would this award enable/support the applicant to scale or improve their work?
  • ADAPTABILITY: Can the applicant demonstrate examples of their ability to adapt and evolve to changing conditions? 

The grand prize Waislitz Global Citizen Award will be awarded to an applicant based on the 5 criteria listed above.

The Waislitz Global Citizen Disruptor Award will be awarded to an individual who excels in the “Disruption” criteria.

The Waislitz Global Citizens’ Choice Award will be selected with input from public online voting by the Global Citizen community.

The Waislitz Global Citizen COVID-19 Response Award will be 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.

Past Winners

2019

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.

Learn More

2018

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.

Learn More

2017

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.

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2016

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.

Learn More

2015

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.

Learn More

2014

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.

Learn More


Waislitz Stories


Frequently Asked Questions

What is Global Citizen?

Global Citizen is a movement of engaged citizens who are using their collective voice to end extreme poverty by 2030. On our platform, Global Citizens learn about the systemic causes of extreme poverty, take action on those issues, and earn rewards for their actions — as part of a global community committed to lasting change.

Who is Alex Waislitz?

Alex Waislitz is the founder of the Waislitz Foundation. 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.

Who is eligible to apply?

Entrants aged eighteen (18) years of age or older from anywhere in the world are eligible to apply for the awards. 

Can I nominate someone for the Awards?

No, applicants must apply for the awards themselves.

Are the prizes for organizations as well as individuals?

The awards are for individuals or individual representatives of organizations. The prize will be awarded to an individual, but the money will be allocated to the organization that the individual works for.

Do you only accept non-profits?

No. We accept applications from any individual who is doing impactful work and who has a registered legal entity such as non-profit, for-profit, B-corp, social enterprise, etc.

I have a lot of great ideas, but am just starting out. Am I eligible for the Awards?

We are glad you are passionate about making a difference in the global community. However, these awards are for individuals who have demonstrated impact towards ending extreme poverty over a minimum of 1-2 years.

What does the judging criterion “Global Citizenship” mean?

Please reference the Global Citizen Manifesto

When does the application open? When does it close? 

The application opens for submissions at 10:00AM EDT on Weds, May 27, 2020 and closes on Sun, June 21, 2020 at 11:59 PM EDT. 

Can I apply in a language other than English?

Unfortunately, at this time we are only able to accept applications in English.
You are welcome to draft your application in another language and send us a translation. We are judging you on the criteria, not your expression.

What is the evaluation criteria?

Entrants will be evaluated based on individual merit, including the following five (5) key areas:

  • GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP: How does the applicant embody and exemplify the values and practices of a Global Citizen? (See Global Citizen manifesto)
  • PROOF OF CONCEPT: Does the applicant have a strong proof of concept with at least 1-2 years of impact towards ending extreme poverty? 
  • DISRUPTION: Has the applicant created measurable impact in an innovative manner that disrupts the systems that allow for extreme poverty to exist?
  • SCALABILITY: How would this award enable/support the applicant to scale or improve their work? 
  • ADAPTABILITY: Can the applicant demonstrate examples of their ability to adapt and evolve to changing conditions?

What is the grand prize and how is the winner chosen?

The Waislitz Global Citizen Award grand prize is a cash prize of $100,000 USD. 

Entrants will be evaluated based on individual merit, including the following five (5) key areas

  • GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP: How does the applicant embody and exemplify the values and practices of a Global Citizen? (See Global Citizen manifesto)
  • PROOF OF CONCEPT: Does the applicant have a strong proof of concept with at least 1-2 years of impact towards ending extreme poverty? 
  • DISRUPTION: Has the applicant created measurable impact in an innovative manner that disrupts the systems that allow for extreme poverty to exist?
  • SCALABILITY: How would this award enable/support the applicant to scale or improve their work?
  • ADAPTABILITY: Can the applicant demonstrate examples of their ability to adapt and evolve to changing conditions?


The grand prize winner will be selected by the Waislitz Foundation based on the five (5) criteria listed above.

What are the additional prizes and how are the winners chosen?

There are three additional prizes at $50,000 each: the Waislitz Global Citizen Disruptor Award, the Waislitz Global Citizens’ Choice Award and the Waislitz Global Citizen COVID-19 Response Award.

Entrants will be evaluated based on individual merit, including the following five (5) key areas

  • GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP: How does the applicant embody and exemplify the values and practices of a Global Citizen? (See Global Citizen manifesto)
  • PROOF OF CONCEPT: Does the applicant have a strong proof of concept with at least 1-2 years of impact towards ending extreme poverty? 
  • DISRUPTION: Has the applicant created measurable impact in an innovative manner that disrupts the systems that allow for extreme poverty to exist?
  • SCALABILITY: How would this award enable/support the applicant to scale or improve their work? 
  • ADAPTABILITY: Can the applicant demonstrate examples of their ability to adapt and evolve to changing conditions?

The Waislitz Global Citizen Disruptor Award will be awarded to an individual who excels in the “Disruption” criteria.

The Waislitz Global Citizens’ Choice Award will be selected with input from public online voting by the Global Citizen community.

The Waislitz Global Citizen COVID-19 Response Award will be 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.

What is the judging process?

Applicants will be judged against criteria by a group of judges appointed by Global Citizen.

Between 10-15 semi-finalists will be selected and notified on or around the week of July 6. Those semi-finalists will move forward to a public vote and final round of judging.

From the semi-finalists, 4 winners will be selected by the Waislitz foundation and notified on or around July 27.

What happens if I am a semi-finalist?

If you are selected as a semi-finalist, we will reach out to you to request a headshot and bio for the public vote. We may also request supplemental financial information.

What weight does the public vote have in determining the Waislitz Global Citizens’ Choice Award winner?

The public vote is a factor in determining the Waislitz Global Citizens’ Choice Award but not the only factor. The winner will be chosen by the Waislitz Foundation taking into account the results of the public vote and the five (5) criteria listed previously. 

When will I find out if I am a winner? 

You will be notified of your application status on or around July 27, 2020. 

If I am a winner, do I have to spend the award money a certain way? 

No. Any award money is unconditional. However, we do require winners to agree to provide regular written updates to Global Citizen and the Waislitz Foundation on their use of the cash prize.

Is there an awards ceremony? 

Due to COVID-19, there will be no awards ceremony in 2020.

Where can I ask questions not covered here?

If you have any questions that are not answered on the awards’ information page or in these FAQs, please email waislitzaward@globalcitizen.org. Regretfully, we will only be able to respond to questions not answered here.

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