The Challenge

Finalist team pitch at 2023 Green Heart Challenge
Finalist team pitch at 2023 Green Heart Challenge

"Kids may be only 25% of the world's population, but we are 100% of the future."

-Melati Wijsen, Founder of Youthtopia (Bali, Indonesia)

Your youth IS your superpower. This is your world to inherit, the good and the bad. You have a voice and you have the right to demand action on things you know are wrong. As youth advocate Melati Wijsen says, you ARE 100% of the future!

 A big key to being an effective advocate and champion for change is genuine passion, being informed, and clearly presenting your plan for change. In this challenge, we are focusing on WATER in all of it's forms -- drinking water, coastal and river resources, water as our source of life -- because EVERYONE should have access to clean and safe water.


Your Challenge

Explore and identify one problem or injustice relating to water in your community, and design a feasible solution to start addressing this problem.

Rules & Details

  • Teams must be registered through a teacher or adult advisor
  • A team should be made up of 2-5 young people who are in an age group defined below
  • Submissions will be grouped into the following categories:
    • Primary: Ages 10-11
    • Junior: Ages 12-14
    • Senior: Ages 15-18
    • A team will be placed in a category based on its OLDEST member
  • Work on the plan should be led by students/ youth, not the advisor
  • Each team should plan to complete their own Green Heart Action Plan and pitch video for review in Round 1 at your school.
  • A maximum of ONE submission per class or club should be selected for Round 2.
  • Round 1 finalists should be uploaded to the judging platform by March 22 for Round 2 of judging. 


  • January 16: Challenge platform opens and the challenge begins!
  • February 9: Problem statement submission deadline
  • March 22: Round 1 Finalists (limit of one submission per class or club) should be submitted through the platform for Round 2 of judging
  • April 5: Finalists in each age category will be announced for the FINAL EVENT
  • April/ May (date TBA): Final event where finalists present their project ideas to live judge panels


There are two deliverables or final products each team should plan to submit for this Challenge:

  1. Green Heart Action Plan that describes your problem and your proposed solution
  2. Pitch video presenting your solution to your audience (maximum 2 minutes)

Review & Judging Criteria

  • Problem Statement & Root Cause: Is the problem clearly defined and presented as a compelling problem to be addressed? Is the root cause of the problem identified and explained? 
  • Solution: Is the proposed solution clearly addressing the problem, and is the plan for HOW the team would go about implementing the solution clear and feasible?
  • Research: Were credible sources used to support the problem statement and development of the solution? 
  • Measures of Success: Are there clearly defined measures of success that can indicate whether the solution is working or not? 
  • Impact & Equity: Is there a strong case made for the positive impact this solution will have on the community, and how it will benefit all people? 
  • Next Steps: Have you clearly outlined steps for taking your solution to the next stage and make a clear ask for support from your audience?
  • Video Persuasiveness & Creativity: Does the team's video pitch describe the problem and solution creatively and persuasively? 

Judging & Prizes

  • Submissions will be judged within their age groups -- Primary (10-11); Junior (12-14); Senior (15-18)
  • Three submissions/ teams from each age range will be selected to present as part of the FINAL EVENT in April or May (date & format to be announced)
  • Finalist teams will have the opportunity to pitch their solutions to a guest judge panel (date and format of final event will be announced)
  • Finalist presenters will receive a certificate of accomplishment from Captain Planet Foundation for their work in the Green Heart STEM Challenge
  • One team from each age group, plus one people's choice winner, will be selected as the winners of the 2024 Green Heart STEM Challenge. Team members will be invited to participate in the 2024 Green Heart Idea Incubator, an in-person summer session to develop the ideas further into implementation, as well as a seed grant of up to $1000 to fund their solution.

What do you mean by water justice?