What is World Challenge?
World Challenge is a global competition and its objective is to find projects or small businesses that have shown innovation and made a difference to the local community. Since it began, in January 2004, World Challenge has received lots of nominations from all over the world. These include, for example, projects that have helped farmers in Peru or improved the lives of people in the slums of Colombia. Each year thousands of people vote to say who they think deserves to win. One of the 2007 nominees was from a rural community in the Brazilian Amazon. Marajo Island is the largest fresh water island in the world, and for years the 200,000 people who live there have worked in the fishing industry during the dry season, when the river is full of fish. But during the rainy season the fish disappear. That is also the time when the Andiroba trees deposit their seeds. These seeds are carried by the rivers and many end up on the beaches of Marajo. For years the fishermen from Marajo have considered these seeds a problem but a Brazilian company saw an opportunity to make money out of them. In 2004, this company organized a cooperative to collect the seeds and extract their oil for the cosmetics industry. Life on the island has improved for many families since 2004. This project has made a huge difference for the families of the 1,000 people working in the business.
(Based on: www.theworldchallenge.co.uk. 03/11/2010.)
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