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African Rural Connect 2012 Contest- National Peace Corps Association

Africa Rural Connect (“ARC” or the “Project”) is an experiment in global collaboration which intends to put collective thoughts together in order to identify creative, new plans to deal with the fundamental problems of agricultural development and rural poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The African Rural Connect contest propose that you (the people who have lived and worked in rural Sub-Saharan Africa) offer your perspective, expertise and creativity to generate action plans that will address the problems of farmers, who are mostly women, the rural poor and, more generally, the needs of rural communities in one of the most impoverished regions of the world.  Your contributions as part of its online community will form practical plans that, in turn, may gain public exposure, influence public policy and perhaps win financial support for implementation.

If you care about rural poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa and the importance of agricultural development as a path to a better future, ARC invites you to submit, contribute, and comment on promising ideas, proposals and analyses, all of which may form action plans aimed at improving the livelihoods of millions of subsistence farmers, their families and their communities.

Contest Period and Deadline

The contest runs from April 15 – May 31, 2012. Awards will be selected by our Panel of Judges out of the ten finalists in the Leaderboard, or “Round Winners,” as well as up to five additional finalists.

After the contest ends on May 31, 2012, the top 3 plans will be selected and will receive awards as follows:


Grand Prize: The winner will receive $5,000 to help implement the winning plan. A U.S.-based winner will also receive round trip airfare, lodging, and registration to attend the National Peace Corps Association’s Minneapolis conference June 29-30, 2012.

2nd place: $2,500

3rd place: $1,000

 Selection Criteria

The Panel of Judges will evaluate the posts, ideas and proposed plans, identifying those that in their opinion are the most original, creative, practical, scalable and likely to succeed, with special attention given to those which appear to offer the greatest improvements in the lives of a population of small-scale farmers, mostly women, and others in the rural communities of Sub-Saharan Africa.

Suggested Area of Focus

ARC participants are advised to develop ideas under one or more of the following themes: water resources, agribusiness, post-harvest losses/storage, transportation and infrastructure, and communication methods with the rural African farmer.


The Contest is open to people who are at least 18 years of age or older at the time the Contest commences and who have access to the Internet and World Wide Web.

How to Enter the Contest

On the Africa Rural Connect website your innovative ideas, build on your ideas or those of others and develop practical action plans to solve specific problems related to agricultural development in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Participants are encouraged to use the ARC community to solicit feedback on your proposals in order to refine and improve them.

You may submit as many ideas as you like and you are encouraged to work on them collaboratively in groups and teams. See link below for more details 

Entry Process

You begin by going to the ARC Project website, completing your profile information and then browsing among the ideas already posted related to key word or phrases in your area of interest.

Once you are ready to post your own idea click on “Add Idea” and type in the space provided.

Include title and tags for the theme to which it best corresponds and the country from which the idea originates.

Visit the ARC Contest website