Opportunity: $10million up for Grabs!

Written by
Written by

Deolu Akinyemi

I heard about this on the 24th of September 2008, but for one reason or the other haven’t written about it. The closing date to taking advantage of this opportunity is the 20th of October, 2008. I’m sure some of you know already, but for some, you are in a hurry to have me let the cat out of the bag.

If you could suggest and idea that could help a lot of people what would it be? If you have this kind of idea, buckle up because this opportunity might be for you. Haven discovered that beyond the basic level of material wealth, the only thing that increases happiness, is helping others, google has put up for grabs $10million for projects for any 1-5 people who have great ideas that can impact a lot of people.


Google is 10, and they believe that the best way to celebrate it, is to help a lot of people, by funding someone with a great idea to impact and help people. Google believes that helping helps everybody, the helper and the helped alike. They have also decided to give away to this project $10^100 (10 to the power of 100) which interestingly means googol and is where their name was derived from. For this competition their key phrase is “May those who help the most win”.

Why this Project?

Google is asking – What would help most? They believe they don’t have the answers, that the answers might be in a company, a university or your head. They are looking for ideas that help as many people as possible, in any way, and they are committing the funding to launch them. You can submit your ideas and help vote on ideas from others. Final idea selections will be made by an advisory board.

How it works

Think through you idea, it’s basically in something you’ve observed, some notion that you’ve been fiddling with, some small connection you’ve noticed, some old thing you have seen with new eyes, and it needs to be able to help many people. You are not required to have the technical expertise to implement your idea.


1. Submit your idea here, you can supplement the idea with an optional 30seconds video.

2. 100 ideas are selected, and Voting begins from the public on the 27th of January, 2009 to reduce this to 20 ideas. An advisory board will then select up to 5 final ideas. To get reminders to vote, click here. The up to 5 winners will be announced mid February.

3. Google is committing $10million to implement/jumpstart these projects, and even if you are not selected, Google hopes to connect people with good ideas to charitable organizations who could help implement them.


Community: How can we help connect people, build communities and protect unique cultures?
Opportunity: How can we help people better provide for themselves and their families?
Energy: How can we help move the world toward safe, clean, inexpensive energy?
Environment: How can we help promote a cleaner and more sustainable global ecosystem?
Health: How can we help individuals lead longer, healthier lives?
Education: How can we help more people get more access to better education?
Shelter: How can we help ensure that everyone has a safe place to live?
Everything else: Sometimes the best ideas don’t fit into any category at all.

Samples of Great Ideas

1. Hippo Water roller -Developed in Africa, where it is most used, the Hippo Water Roller is a barrel-shaped container, attached to a handle, that holds 24 gallons of water and can be rolled with little effort like a wheelbarrow, making it easier for villagers on foot to transport critically needed fresh water to their homes.

2. Google News -began after the September 11 terrorist attacks, when an engineer became frustrated that he couldn’t aggregate news sources from around the world in one place.

3. Anything you can figure out in the categories above.

Wrap Up

You can push in as many ideas as you want, there is no number limit. You may also want to compete by teaming up with a few friends, and bounce the idea off each other. It’s 8 days to go, and who knows, your idea may be the next Nobel winning idea. Leave the level of the shoulda, coulda woulda. Just do it! Who says a Nigerian should not be among the top 5?

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