Afri-Plastics Challenge Strand 1: Accelerating Growth 2021 (£1,000,000 prize)

Applications for the Afri-Plastics Challenge Strand 1: Accelerating Growth 2021 are now open. The Challenge aims to reduce marine plastics in Sub-Saharan African countries by developing and scaling innovative solutions to plastic mismanagement in a way that promotes gender equality and empowerment of women and girls.

Over 17 million tonnes of waste are generated by Sub-Saharan Africa annually, and only 12% of plastic waste is recycled. The Challenge will help communities throughout Sub-Saharan Africa to prevent plastic waste from entering the marine environment by finding ways to minimize reliance on plastic and new ways of managing plastic waste.


  • In October 2021, 30 Semi-Finalists will be selected and each receive a £10,000 grant, and of those, 15 will be selected to move forward to the finalist stage and will receive a grant of £100,000 to implement their scaling plans.
  • At the end of this finalist stage, the 15 finalists will be required to submit a detailed scaling report outlining progress against their scaling plans, together with a pitch video for evaluation by the judges against the criteria.
  • Three winners will be selected, the first receiving a prize of £1m, a second receiving a prize of £750,000, and a third receiving a prize of £500,000.


  • Applicants must be delivering an existing solution that tackles the reduction of plastic pollution.
  • As a processor or a waste collector, you must deal with at least 10 tonnes of plastic waste per month and no more than a maximum threshold of 200 tonnes of plastic waste per month at the time of application.
  • Delivery of solutions must be in Sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Applicants must be formally constituted and operating in Sub-Saharan Africa as either a registered business, non-governmental organization (NGO), or government agency.
  • Applicants can be a single entity, an African partnership or an international partnership. For partnership applications, the nominated lead applicant must be operating in Sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Applicants must own or have permission to use relevant intellectual property.


All entrants to read the Applicant Handbook along with the full Terms and Conditions before entering the Challenge.

Click here to apply

Deadline: September 15, 2021

For more information, visit Afri-Plastics Challenge.