On the journey to award the Elevate Prize, we were introduced to many outstanding people making a difference in the world. As Fellows they receive:


Access to our expert networks and resources.

Support every step of the way to help them amplify their impact – and inspire others to take action too.

Meet our 5 inaugural Fellows and see how you can help them make an even more powerful difference.

Faisal Saeed al mutar

Ideas Beyond Borders
Battling extremism by promoting ideas that foster critical thinking, civil rights, and science.
winner profile

Extremism often takes hold because there are no other ideas challenging it. Faisal and the IBB team translate, share, promote ideas that are otherwise unavailable to Arab youth, empowering them with knowledge in authoritarian regimes and dictatorships.  Their goal is to create a more modern, pluralistic Middle East.

We are sharing fresh ideas with millions… I believe these ideas, this knowledge, will defeat ignorance and extremism more effectively than tanks and guns ever could.

– Faisal Saeed Al Mutar

Salva Dut’s experience of civil war in Sudan, and growing up as a “lost boy” in refugee camps, gave him first-hand insight into the challenges people face. Challenges that he’s tackling from the ground up – literally – by helping communities drill water wells. To date, the organization has brought clean safe water to over 1,500,000 people – and it’s ready to do even more.

They don’t have anything. And they need someone, a person – just a little thing – to open a door … to where they can change their whole lives by themselves.” Salva Dut

Salva dut

Water for South Sudan
Empowering communities to access clean, safe drinking water.
winner profile

Brenda palms barber

Sweet Beginnings
Restoring self-worth and dignity, one job, one pot of honey, at a time.
winner profile

Sweet Beginnings was created by Brenda Palms Barber (The “Bee Lady” of the West Side of Chicago), to help solve the problem of unemployment among Black men and women with criminal backgrounds. It offers jobs and training opportunities through its urban honey business – over 2,000 to date – restoring self-worth and dignity.

As honeybees seek nectar without distinguishing between a weed or flower, Sweet Beginnings seeks to elevate the sweet and good within all to support productive employees, good parents, and civically engaged residents.” Brenda Palms Barber

Learn more about Sweet Beginnings, and support the mission by donating and treating yo’rself to some Beelove products.

Erica Ford and her organization, LIFE Camp, is on the front lines of intervening in the violence that plagues Black and Brown communities, helping people heal and giving them the tools to live, build, and thrive. LIFE Camp has developed a scalable model –  the Crisis Management System – which combats the traumatic living conditions in target communities. The vision: to abolish the racist systems that perpetuate poverty, high unemployment, crime and marginalization. The proof: radically effective – 67% decline in homicides in 2017 alone. The approach: radically human – 100% community found and led.

Right now, we can’t breathe. This work that I do, this project, is our oxygen mask. I will do this work until my last breath.

Check it out and get involved

Erica ford

A scalable model for creating vibrant, healthy communities where Black and Brown people can live and thrive.
winner profile

Valter Cumbi

Source Code - PENSA *660#
Giving access to health information to the people who need it most.
winner profile

The majority of citizens of Mozambique live in remote areas where accessing healthcare can be a challenge. Source Code created health platform that can be accessed on any basic cell phone, free of charge, through all national operators. It delivers Ministry of Health (MOH) approved information, surveys and self-screenings, and creates reports for the MOH and partners. The outcome? Better health.

“[I am] trying to use my knowledge and experience to positively impact others’ lives”



In preparation for next year, we invite you to learn more about the prize here and follow along on our social media channels.