Over the past few months we have participated in an annual awards event sponsored by FT and Citi. Last night, we were fortunate to share dinner with social entrepreneurs and others who were also nominated for one of the 5 regional awards for their work to improve cities around the world.
FT and Citi put together great showcase videos for each project and played them before the announcement for each category. I was caught off guard when they announced SeeClickFix as the regional winner for North America.
My fellow nominees were so inspirational, and I was particularly taken with the work that has come from The Competitiveness Company in Jamaica. I met Beverly Morgan, head of TCC, in San Francisco last month. Her solution to urban violence floored me. In short, Beverly has created over 100 small business owners out of gang members who have turned their backyard hobby of reselling tropical fish into a career. Last night in my acceptance speech, I reflected on my kinship to Beverly and TCC. SeeClickFix is a place where communities can find their weak spots and seek to repair them. TCC is a testament to discovering your strongest muscle and strengthening it. Since learning of the initiative, I've been wondering what New Haven can designate as its 'tropical fish.' No answers yet, but I'm curious to know what other's think. Maybe it's food?
The global winner out of Nairobi, Sanergy "provides sustainable, hygienic sanitation inNairobi's slums through an innovative toilet franchise system that generates additional income by recycling human waste to create electricity as well as organic fertiliser for farmers."
Also runners up for the North America Award were the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery and Baltimore Housing. I'll be joining folks from the National Portrait gallery on a Satellite media tour out of New York this morning.
We would like to thank FT and Citi who have helped give an even larger megaphone to SeeClickFix. From this morning's press opportunity and the most recent highlight in today's FT Magazine to the video below, we are confident that this will take SeeClickFix to the next level globally.