Cannes Lions attempts to change the world

The festival partners with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to solicit ideas from the creative community.

The Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity is attempting to do some good by partnering with the world’s largest philanthropic organization – the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

A call to action called “Grand Challenges Explorations: Aid is Working. Tell the World” is asking the world’s communications professionals for innovative ways to tell the real story behind global aid. An individual, team, agency or company can submit a two-page proposal based on the foundation’s Grand Challenges Explorations program.

Up to 10 participants will be awarded $100,000 to develop their idea, as well as the chance to be mentored by last year’s Grand Prix winners who make up the “Cannes Chimera” – one senior creative from each of the Grand Prix-winning agencies, including Wieden + Kennedy Amsterdam, Droga5 in New York, Cheil Worldwide in Korea and JWT Shanghai, among others.

The deadline for entering is May 15, and the submissions will be judged by the Cannes Chimera, as well as members of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and a panel of experts.

In the fall, the finalists will be flown to Seattle to be mentored by the Chimera and will have an opportunity to re-submit their ideas to the Foundation for the chance to win an addition $1 million in funding.

In 2013, the winners will be invited back to Cannes to show the rest of the global advertising community what they’ve done and the difference it’s made.

Photo of Bill Gates: Department for International Development/Russell Watkins, via Flickr Creative Commons