Team Mareiwa become global Winnovators champions!

6 min read
Team Mareiwa become global Winnovators champions!

Hunter Water's Team Mareiwa has defeated corporate teams from across the world to be named the 2019 Winnovators global champions, becoming the third Australian winner in four years.

Winnovators is WaterAid's employee development program that invites corporate teams to solve a real-world water, sanitation and hygiene challenge while learning new skills, thinking outside the box and raising valuable funds for WaterAid.

The morning after Team Mareiwa captain Lauren Randall accepted her team's Asia Pacific Regional Overall prize at an event in Melbourne, her team was informed of their global Winnovators victory.

They overcame the most international field of teams in Winnovators history, with over 30 teams from Australia, United States, United Kingdom, Singapore, China, Japan, Mexico, Argentina and Columbia competing.

This year Winnovators teams raised over $340,000 AUD, with roughly $17,500 coming from Hunter Water's Team Mareiwa.

Yarra Valley Water's YVWayuu won the Asia-Pacific award for Best Fund, raising over $25,000.

Team Mareiwa was one of 10 teams from Australia, and one of three from Hunter Water. This was Hunter Water's first time competing.

Team leader Lauren Randall was overjoyed by her team's victory. "Everyone's put in so much effort and I, as team leader, really appreciate it. I'm sure WaterAid really appreciates it too," she said, upon accepting the Asia-Pacific Regional Overall prize.

Team Mareiwa's Asia Pacific victory was decided by a single point.

"Team Mareiwa provided a strong submission with consistently presented well documented evidence across the fund, learn and solve with focus on the Colombia challenge," WaterAid Australia Chief Executive Rosie Wheen explained during the awards ceremony.

See below for other winners throughout the night:

Best Presentation – Hunter Water, Emanti Hunters

Judges considered how the team delivered a well thought out and engaging business pitch, plus strong deliverables for all three area of Solve, Learn and Fund.

The winner took us on their journey in the Solve, Learn and Fund with clearly articulated consistently branded visual documentation, well referenced and detailed report accompanied by a fantastic lego stop motion video! That must have taken hours!

Best Community Approach – Sydney Water, Team 3W

Judges loved how the team really thought about the local community when diving into their fundraising initiatives, somehow making a profit from Weddings!?

On top of this we were very impressed with their global reach, having gained support from countries as far as Canada and Belgium, as well as sending their ‘traveling T-Shirt as far as Japan. They really brought their team to the global stage this year!

Best Innovation – Sydney Water, Team 3W

Judges considered how the team showed innovation within the approach to Solve, Fund and/or Learn.  Winnovators defines innovation as “a creative approach that drives change, and is a new and successful way of approaching one or more of the core areas of Solve, Fund and Learn. 

The winner created an amazing solar cooker that could be used to heat up and sterilise dirty water to make it drinkable. The idea didn’t require any fuel to use which was something they highlighted as an issue for the people of the Wayuu. Further to this, they had an additional idea to use the cookers to dry food which could be sold and potentially bring the owners to have an income.

Best Social Media – Hunter Water, Emanti Hunters

Judges considered how the team used social media in all three areas of solve, fund and learn to create awareness about their work and engage the public.

The winner here managed to achieve thousands of views, interactions and followers across Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, even securing an interview with a local news outlet. We also really enjoyed reading your ‘Winnovators Times’ news report.

Best Learn – Hunter Water, Mareiwa

Judges considered how the team demonstrated a focus on learning and development throughout all outlined deliverables and presentations alongside the pre and post program surveys.

This winning team all completed a CLARA assessment to understand what areas of learning they needed to work on and also created an app tracker that they could easily update after each team meeting so they could follow their progress. Amazing detail.

Best Fund – Yarra Valley Water, YVWayuu

Judges considered how the team delivered the events, how plans and approaches were adapted where necessary how the wider community was engaged which is particularly important here in Australia to get our name out there. As well as the total profit raised and return on investment.

The winner here reached their ambitious target of $25,000! With the help of their team mascot, Santi the Sloth, they managed to really engage with their employees, family and the community. They also really engaged with their chosen country by holding a very successful Latin Fiesta.

Best Solve – India – Queensland Urban Utilities, Urban Aid

Judges considered how the team considered the local context of India, feasibility of their solution and alignment to the solve challenge brief to develop the best solution to the India problem.

The winner here created an amazing functional design and prototype for their solution. Even consulting with people linked to disability and the focus country to see if their idea would work, then making amendments to their solution to come up with their finished product, which we hope can be implemented in country.

Best Solve – Colombia – Hunter Water, Mareiwa

Judges considered how the team considered local context, feasibility and alignment to the solve challenge brief to develop the best solution to the Colombia challenge.

The winning team here produced a fantastic five step plan. They designed some water bugs cartoon characters to educate children and their parents while also explaining how a micro-financing model could help their idea succeed.

Best Solve – eSwatini – ABOM, Whirlwinds

Judges considered how the team considered local context, feasibility and alignment to the solve challenge brief to develop the best solution to the eSwatini challenge.

This team produced an incredibly detailed solve solution and followed the brief perfectly. They monitored risk evaluation, providing detailed technical specifications and even did this across 6 separate solution options to see which would work best. The modelling concepts and kiosk demand results left the judges very impressed.

Highly Commended – GHD, H2OAid

Achieving very high marks for their presentation and their fantastic learn submission. If you get a chance to look over their learn ‘footy’ cards then I would recommend you do. These were a really fun and informative way of expressing their strengths and weaknesses and what they had learnt from the program. Their Kick Around Kiosk idea was also a fun idea to help engage with the locals.

Highly Commended – Hunter Water, Indiavators

Having been marked very highly across their fund, community approach and social media, this team clearly put in some very hard work during the program. They created a new nomination challenge on social media to raise awareness for their focus country. They also made and sold 2780 dumplings! This was an easy choice and they came so close to a number of other awards.

Highly Commended – Sydney Water, Team Phuza

This team had a very innovative solution that wold incorporate an already existing system and roll it out across their chosen country. Their presentation was very strong and easy for the judges to review. They showed some great teamwork by joining up with another team for a joint event which raised them the most funds.

Highly Commended – Queensland Urban Utilities, Hydra

This team boasted a detailed solve solution using a solar powered pump design. Similar to the last team they also showed great team work by joining up with another team at their organisation to achieve their fund goals.

Interested in competing in Winnovators 2020? Contact Leigh Mawby ([email protected]) or Michael McLennan ([email protected]) to express your interest today.