2023 Water in Rural Africa Challenge Competition

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Application Deadline:   February 28, 2023.


DeserTech is an Innovation Community that promotes the development, adaptation, and commercialization of technologies that enable sustainable living in arid climates, while simultaneously, turning Beer Sheva and the Negev region into a global entrepreneurial hub for these technologies. The DeserTech community is a joint initiative of the Merage Foundation Israel, the Israel Innovation Institute, The Ministry of Environmental Protection, and Ben Gurion University.

Innovation: Africa is a non-profit organization with a mission to bring Israeli solar, water, and agricultural technologies to rural African villages. Since our establishment in 2008, Innovation: Africa has completed over 650 projects, providing solar energy and light to schools and medical centers, and pumping clean water in remote villages. The organization has impacted over 3.4 million people across 10 African countries including Uganda, Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia, South Africa, eSwatini, Cameroon, DRC, Ethiopia, and Senegal and over the next 5 years, aims to undertake a comprehensive expansion plan and complete 1,750 projects to provide light and/or access to clean water to 10 million people.


  • Identify innovative tech solutions to water quality challenges in Innovation: Africa
    off grid water systems, by reaching out to the Israeli ecosystem, and allocating
    solutions/ companies/ entrepreneurs that can potentially and practically address
    these challenges
  •  Promoting and positioning Innovation Africa in the Israeli ecosystem as a leader in
    clean water solutions to remote villages, for future potential collaborations.


Connection: This Challenge Competition gives you the opportunity to connect with a leading Israeli NGO which has successfully completed hundreds of clean water and energy projects across Africa. You will learn about the local ecosystem and its pain points.

Mentorship: The finalists will be mentored by top business and tech experts in iA, who will help with adapting and sharpening the solutions models and technologies to the field.

Sponsored Pilot: The winner will collaborate with Innovation: Africa in a joint POC in one country, with the potential for future implementations. The sponsored POC will be planned jointly with Innovation: Africa considering the nature of the solution, location, and the pre-determined objectives.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • The Challenge is open to all persons and entities who are able to form legally binding contracts under applicable law. Applicants under 18 years of age must obtain their parent or guardian’s consent to submit an application.
  •  All applications, and proposed solutions must be original to the applicant, or, if not original, used with written authorization of others whose contributions must be identified in the application.
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