MiracleFeet Earns Spot in MacArthur’s Top 100, Advances in 100&Change Competition

February 19, 2020

$100M investment would transform 200,000 lives in five years—and create systems needed to treat over 50 percent of annual clubfoot cases, a leading birth defect and cause of disability, long overlooked in most of world.

The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation announced MiracleFeet was one of the highest-scoring proposals, designated as the Top 100, in its 100&Change competition for a single $100 million grant to help solve one of the world’s most critical social challenges.

MiracleFeet’s proposal would scale treatment to end a major cause of physical disability—untreated clubfoot affects over 2 million children—in the 11 highest-need countries where over half of cases occur each year: India, Uganda, Pakistan, Nigeria, Indonesia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, the Philippines, Tanzania, and Myanmar.

By addressing this common and readily treatable birth defect with MacArthur’s support, MiracleFeet and the Global Clubfoot Initiative would change a status quo that has left millions of children behind in these regions, creating sustainable access to the same life-changing medical innovation widely available elsewhere—for decades to follow.

MacArthur’s Board of Directors will select up to 10 finalists from the top 100 high-scoring proposals this spring as the foundation’s next step in awarding a $100 million grant to help solve a critical social problem.

“$100 million would mobilize an unprecedented effort to eradicate untreated clubfoot, a historically neglected condition. MacArthur would be the first global funder to address it at scale,” said Executive Director Chesca Colloredo-Mansfeld. “Together, we would ensure health systems in the most populous low- and middle-income countries can provide long-term access to the low-cost treatment that essentially cures 95 percent of children born with it, giving them lifelong social and economic opportunity through restored mobility.”

“With a sweeping investment, the systems we would create for accessible high-quality disability and rehabilitative services in these countries will provide a roadmap for others to follow—so that one day in our lifetimes, no child suffers the devastating consequences of this treatable disability.”

100&Change proposals must identify a problem and offer a solution that promises significant and durable change. Submissions were rigorously vetted, undergoing MacArthur’s initial administrative review, a Peer-to-Peer review, an evaluation by an external panel of judges, and a technical review by specialists whose expertise was matched to the project.

clubfoot treatment

MiracleFeet Joins Bold Solutions Network

MacArthur’s top designation earns MiracleFeet a spot in the Bold Solutions Network. The searchable online platform showcases the highest-rated proposals that emerge from competitions managed by Lever for Change. Building on the success of 100&Change, MacArthur created Lever for Change to unlock significant philanthropic capital by helping donors find and fund vetted, high-impact opportunities aligned with their philanthropic goals. Proposals in the Bold Solutions Network undergo extensive evaluation and due diligence to ensure each solution promises real and measurable progress to accelerate social change.

“MacArthur seeks to generate increased recognition, exposure, and support for the high-impact ideas designated as the Top 100,” said Cecilia Conrad, CEO of Lever for Change and MacArthur Managing Director, 100&Change. “We are committed to matching philanthropists with powerful solutions and problem solvers to accelerate social change.”

Since the inaugural competition, other funders and philanthropists have committed an additional $419 million to date to support bold solutions by 100&Change applicants.

Treating clubfoot is one of the most effective investments in public health today.

MiracleFeet offers an incredible return on investment: $500—the average cost of complete treatment in the countries where we work—changes a child’s life and generates an average of $120,000 of additional income in lifetime earnings, a social return of 240 times the initial investment.

Any amount helps change a life forever.