Mantra Winner

It began with a question: which innovative projects and ideas could have the greatest global impact five years from now? On 9 October in Geneva, The Global Journal brought together a distinguished Jury, 19 project finalists, and a diverse international audience drawn from the private, public and non-profit sectors, to participate in the inaugural GLOBAL+5 competition. Speaking on behalf of his fellow Jury members at a packed awards ceremony, the former Prime Minister of Greece, George Papandreou, emphasized how difficult it had been to choose between the projects that made the final shortlist, as “every single one showed a spirit of hope, a spirit of optimism, a spirit of innovation, and a spirit of energy.”

The objective of GLOBAL+5 was to identify and support those individuals and groups committed to finding solutions to the most pressing global challenges. On the night, it was MANTRA, a sanitation program transforming rural livelihoods in eastern India, which won the GLOBAL+5 Grand Award. Receiving the award from Angela de Wolff, President of Sustainable Finance Geneva, MANTRA leader Joe Madiath expressed his surprise that a project focusing on the unglamorous issue of sanitation “could lead to such a big prize.” Three other exciting projects received prizes at the ceremony. The GLOBAL+5 Impact Award was won by The Working World, the GLOBAL+5 Innovation Award was presented to Deepwater Project, and the GLOBAL+5 Empowerment Award went to the social movement Russia Behind Bars. The Jury also used its discretion to highlight three additional projects deserving of a ‘special mention’: Discovering Hands, Sustainable Infrastructure Fund and Peace for Mexico – Mexico for Peace.

To read the in-depth profiles of the award winning projects, as well as further information about all of the other finalists in contention in Geneva, click here or order a copy of The Global Journal.

(Photo © Ziyoda Kurbanova)