Deadline: July 19, 2023
Applications are open for the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) Innovation Challenge 2023. The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) Innovation Accelerator is dedicated to identifying, nurturing, and scaling bold new solutions to tackle global hunger and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In response to the unprecedented global food crisis, they are launching the WFP Innovation Challenge to discover groundbreaking innovations that address the urgent needs of millions affected by hunger.
Over 828 million people – more than one in ten of the world’s population – still go to bed hungry each night. The number of people facing acute food insecurity has reached a record high of 345 million, up from 135 million in 2019. Meanwhile, the cost of delivering food assistance has reached unprecedented levels due to soaring prices of food and fuel. The combination of increased expenses for food and transportation, worsened by the economic consequences of the pandemic, climate change, and the conflict in Ukraine, has made food inaccessible for millions of people, placing significant strain on WFP’s operations.
This edition of the WFP Innovation Challenge seeks to identify and support disruptive social innovations that address key challenges in the fight against hunger. The WFP is particularly interested in solutions for humanitarian assistance and supply chain resilience as they aim to ensure that every donor dollar goes further in addressing hunger while reducing the need for ration cuts.
- Apply to receive up to $100,000 in equity-free funding, with further funding dependent upon progress and measurable achievement of key targets.
- Successful teams will work with WFP’s global network of partners and field operations across more than 120 countries and territories; Teams may also qualify for further funding and support if they are scaling innovations that have proven their concepts and value for social impact.
- You’ll have the chance to work with technical and industry mentors who will provide guidance and accelerate your progress. Selected social innovations will participate in a three to five days long WFP Innovation Bootcamp and Pitch Event.
- Teams will be able to tap into and leverage our strong network of public, private, and government partners to accelerate implementation.
If you are a start-up
- Your start-up must be incorporated at the time of application. It can be for profit or not-for-profit.
- Your innovation must at least be at the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) stage. Proof-of-concept and initial traction is preferred.
- Your solution should be financially viable.
- Your proposal must show how working with WFP will serve your long-term strategy.
If you are a WFP employee
- Your team must have evidence of Country Office support and management buy-in.
- You are encouraged to apply, regardless of your contract type or function.
- They accept project applications from WFP employees who are collaborating with NGOs, government or private sectors.
Applications will be scored according to a standard set of criteria set by the WFP Innovation Accelerator, including:
- alignment with WFP operational priorities and the impact towards the Sustainable Development Goal 2: Zero Hunger;
- the level of innovation the solution brings to WFP and the humanitarian sector at large; and,
- indicators that the solution can be feasibly integrated and financed in the long-term, including the team qualifications.
For more information, visit WFP Accelerator.