“We are faced not with two separate crises, one environmental and the other social, but rather with one complex crisis which is both social and environmental. Strategies for a solution demand an integrated approach to combating poverty, restoring dignity to the excluded, and at the same time protecting nature.”
— His Holiness Pope Francis, Laudato sì (Chapter 4, paragraph 139)

OVERVIEW

Taking up the challenges of Pope’s Francis’ encyclical Laudato si’, The 2019 Laudato Challenge seeks to prevent forced displacement by empowering one million families to remain in their homes by 2021—supporting the vision of the Sustainable Development Goals “as a human dignity narrative, that leaves no one behind.”

By focusing on prevention, we will address the roots causes of forced displacement: poverty, persecution, conflict—and environmental degradation. We will pursue our mission along two tracks: 1. identifying and supporting a few high-quality, later-stage enterprise solutions and 2. securing new, specific and measurable “Commitments to Impact.”

The World Bank report,   Groundswell—Preparing for Internal Climate Migration   ,  concludes that climate change could transform more than 143 million people into “climate migrants” escaping crop failure, water scarcity, and sea-level rise.

The World Bank report, Groundswell—Preparing for Internal Climate Migration, concludes that climate change could transform more than 143 million people into “climate migrants” escaping crop failure, water scarcity, and sea-level rise.


THEMATIC FOCUS

HOME.

This is the theme of The 2019 Laudato sì Challenge.

We believe in co-creating solutions among the public, private and faith-based sectors. We believe that through scaling innovative, sustainable business—and major Commitments to Impact—we can help people remain in their homes and avoid the social, economic and environmental crisis of forced displacement. And, we believe that while much divides us, we can all agree that: helping people remain where they want to be—in their homes—is good for everyone: governments, local economies and families.

Taking up the challenges of Pope’s Francis’ encyclical Laudato si’, The 2019 Laudato sì Challenge addresses forced displacement by empowering one million families to remain in their homes by 2021—supporting the vision of the SDG’s “as a human dignity narrative, that leaves no one behind.”

We will work towards this goal along two parallel, complimentary tracks:

  1. Commitments to Impact: At The 2019 Laudato Challenge final event in Rome in December, we will announce new, specific and measurable “Commitments to Impact” that contribute to our goal of empowering one million families to remain in their homes, by 2021.

  2. Support of the Top Companies. We will choose enterprise solutions based on their traction and potential to empower families to remain in their homes, by addressing the root causes of forced displacement: poverty, persecution, conflict—and environmental degradation. Then, The Laudato sì Challenge will provide mentorship + ecosystem support to help these enterprises scale their impact. We will invite the companies to present their solutions at our final event in Rome.

[We would like to thank Ron Ivey, of Rembrandt Collective, for his work in leading the development of The 2019 Laudato sì Challenge strategy doc/concept note.]


SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS

Through The Laudato sì Challenge, we will strive to connect Laudato sì with the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals:

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HISTORY

In 2016, Paul van Engen, Founder & Chairman of Right Now!, convened a summit in Vatican City to explore ways that the private, public and faith-based sectors could come together and co-create solutions to help some of the world’s most vulnerable people. Out of that meeting rose a group of people committed to putting the principles of His Holiness Pope Francis’ 2015 encyclical Laudato sì into action. The Laudato sì Challenge was born. We are now in our third year. You can review previous years here:


2019 TIMELINE

  • May 15: Official call for entries.

  • August 15: Application deadline.

  • August 16-September 30: From the pool of applications, a committee of world-class judges (see below)—comprised of recognized ethicists and professional businesspeople—select bankable businesses that most effectively and sustainably empower people to remain in their homes, by 2021, building a world that “leaves no one behind.”

  • October 1: The top enterprise solutions are announced.

  • December 5-7: The top companies will present their solutions to global leaders in the public, private and faith-based sectors, at our final event in Rome. Major "Commitments to Impact" will also be announced.


JUDGING COMMITTEE MEMBERS

The following leaders will come together to review the applications and select the top enterprise solutions:


You can be part of the solution in two ways: