Grants:PEG/Aliceba/Outreach to Afrodescendant community in US

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This Wikimedia Foundation grant has a fiscal sponsor. Wikimedia NYC administered the grant on behalf of Aliceba.

statusFunded
AFROcroWd and Interglider.ORG/Outreach to Afrodescendant community in US
This project aims to improve editor diversity by recruiting new editors from the Afrodescendant community in the United States, educate new editors through a series of workshops, and organize an edit-a-thon related to the topics of interest to Afrodesdendant community.
targetEnglish Wikipedia, Haitian Wikipedia, Spanish Wikipedia, French Wikipedia, Twi Wikipedia, Igbo Wikipedia, Yoruba Wikipedia, English Wiktionary, Haitian Wiktionary (on Incubator), Spanish Wiktionary, French Wiktionary, Twi Wiktionary (on Incubator), Igbo Wiktionary (on Incubator), Yoruba Wiktionary (on Incubator), Commons, possibly other Wikipedias and Wiktionaries of African and afrodescendant subgroups that trainees revolve around organically, Wikimedia New York City, Wikimedia DC, Other US-based Wikimedia organizations, including Wikimedia Foundation
strategic priorityIncreasing Participation (larger and more diverse groups of people are contributing to Wikimedia projects)
start date2015-02-01
start year2015
end date2015-06-30
end year2015
budget (local currency)1300
budget (USD)1300
grant typeindividual
non-profit statusNo
creatorAliceba
contact(s)• alice(_AT_)afrocrowd.org• Milos Rancic <millosh@gmail.com>
organization• AFROcroWd and Interglider.ORG
websitehttp://afrocrowd.org/ (under construction)


Goal[edit]

The Project aims at improving participation in Wikimedia projects and free culture, knowledge and software movements by

  1. Improving editor diversity by recruiting new editors from the Afrodescendant community ( people of African descent in New York with appropriate segmented outreach to Afrodescendant self-identified subgroups such as African, African-American, Afro-Latino, Biracial, Black, Black-American, Caribbean, Garifuna, Haitian or West Indian.
  1. Educating new editors through a series of workshops, and organizing an edit-a-thon related to the topics of interest to the Afrodesdendant community.

Plan[edit]

Project activities will unfold as follows:

  • January - pre-grant activities, person to person outreach to group leaders, preliminary social media promotion
  • February - 2 initial general outreach workshops at the Brooklyn Public Library targeting all subgroups
  • March and April -
    • 4-5 workshops each targeting an individual subgroup at a culturally specific venue and with organizations from that subgroup. (Subgroups include African, African-American, Afro-Latino, Biracial, Black, Black-American, Caribbean, Garifuna, Haitian or West Indian.)
    • Workshop in Professor Michelle Materre’s Media Studies class at the New School for Social Research. (Past students and mentees of Professor Materre’s class have founded Black, Brown and Digital.)
  • May
    • Training for trainers
    • Workshop for Caribbean scholars at the Caribbean Studies Association Conference in New Orleans
  • June - Organizing an edit-a-thon at the Brooklyn Public Library with a topic of mutual interest to the various subgroups. (The chosen topic or topics will emerge from interest expressed in prior activities and in concert with subgroup leaders or most engaged workshop attendees.)
  • February to June - Promotional and outreach activities on and off line

Activities[edit]

January[edit]

Pre-grant activities include:

  • Organizing several organizational online meetings between New York and Belgrade
  • Organizing 2 preliminary workshops with very few people invited in order to test methodology and technology (January 10th, January 24th)
  • Testing equipment session with Brooklyn Public Library (January 31st)
  • Preparing material for the future workshops
  • In person meetings with subgroup heads to introduce ideas, including attendance at International Decade for People of African Descent events
  • Creation of social media pages and website
  • Outreach campaign for February kickoff at the Brooklyn Public Library
  • Wikimedia grant writing

Having in mind that the team organizing workshops is on two continents, preliminary meetings and workshops are necessary in order to ensure smooth working environment, and to harmonize approaches of the training team.

February[edit]

Two workshops will be held on February 7th and 8th in the Brooklyn Public Library. The aim of these workshops is to provide general introduction to Wikimedia and the Wikipedia editing process for the larger Afrodescendant community with targeted segmented culturally specific outreach to each subgroup.

The trainers will be the co-founders of AFROCroWd:

  • Aliceba (talk) 19:36, 19 February 2015 (UTC), a Brooklyn-based free knowledge and free culture proponent who has been aggregating and disseminating Haitian citizen media since 2005.
  • Milos Rancic, a Belgrade-based veteran Wikimedian with over 10 years in the movement, Wikimedia Language Committee member and chair of Interglider.ORG (remotely via Google Hangouts, Skype or other live streaming app projected onto the screen);

These workshops will be held with the expertise and technical support and of Interglider.ORG team members Milica Gudovic and Senka Latinovic.

March and April[edit]

During these two months a series of 4-5 workshops will be organized, one each with the African immigrant, non-immigrant African-American/Black-American, Afrolatino and Haitian subgroups at various venues that are culturally specific and with culturally specific targeting. Besides general training in editing, these workshop will provide an opportunity to map and recruit especially interested individuals willing to participate in the project as future trainers. We estimate that we would be able to recruit 5 people for the future team of trainers willing to further disseminate the knowledge in their own respective communities. The group will be provided mentorship and training for trainers that will take place in May.

On April 14th, Alice will offer a workshop on Wikipedia to the students of Professor Michelle Materre’s New Media the New School for Social Research. The workshop will be held during class time and will last two hours.

May[edit]

After recruitment of the future trainers group we will organize 2 sessions as training for trainers, where besides editing skills, we would offer a session on how to organize and facilitate a workshop, in order to equip future trainers with necessary knowledge for independent work with editors. Milica Gudovic will join team as trainer for facilitation skills.

In May, the Caribbean Studies Association Conference will take place in New Orleans (a panel proposals was submitted January 15th), so we proposed to include a workshop on how to edit Wikipedia for interested participants (mostly scholars of Caribbean descent, including the “West Indian”/Caribbean Anglophone subgroup) of this conference. This would be an amazing opportunity to increase reach and participation for this project, but Wikimedia projects as well. At the same time, this would be a very valuable possibility to map future partners to extend this project to the entire US and to academic institutions.

June[edit]

The final activity of the project would be organizing an edit-a-thon at the Brooklyn Public Library on a topic to be determined. (The chosen topic or topics will emerge from interest expressed in prior activities and in concert with subgroup leaders or most engaged workshop attendees.) During the edit-a-thon, a team of trainers would have an opportunity to exercise newly gained skills, while working on creating or improving articles together with the new editors.

Promotional activities[edit]

Promotional activities include:

  • Timely announcements for public events,
  • Developing web site for AFROcroWd
  • Facebook page for the AFROcroWd and the project
  • Organizing 3 social mixer events during project - in February, April and June
  • Various in person meetings with subgroup leaders
  • Attending events related to the International Decade for People of African Descent
  • Identifying and attending events by technology oriented Afrodescendants

Impact[edit]

This initiative was created because certain indicators signal non-proportionate participation of people of African descent (including but not limited to self-identified African, African-American, Afro-Latino, Biracial, Black, Black-American, Caribbean, Garifuna, Haitian or West Indian subgroups) in the Wikimedia movement in the US. We believe that this project would contribute to a positive perception of Wikipedia among users in these communities, and increase skills for contribution to Wikimedia projects.

The workshops will take into account that many Afrodescendant groups in the United States might find that access to Wikipedia’s multilingual crowdsourcing platform can help them transfer free knowledge to populations of African descent outside of the United States that they are connected to through origin or direct familial bonds. Multilingual Afrodescendants may also want to use such platforms to develop and maintain online bodies of relevant knowledge in native languages such as Garifuna, Haitian Kreyòl, Igbo, Bozal Spanish, Twi or Yoruba, thereby contributing to the survival of -and increasing their proficiency in-- those languages while also feeling more culturally grounded.

Target readership[edit]

Wikipedias
Wiktionaries
Other projects
  • Possibly other Wikipedias and Wiktionaries of African and afrodescendant subgroups that trainees revolve around organically.
  • Commons
Members and staff of Wikimedia organizations

Fit with strategy[edit]

What crucial thing will the project try to change or benefit in the Wikimedia movement? Please select the Wikimedia strategic priority(ies) that your project most directly aims to impact and explain how your project fits. Most projects fit all strategic priorites. However, we would like project managers to focus their efforts on impacting 1–2 strategic priorities. Examples of strategic priorities can be found here.

The project primarily aims to increase participation of editors of African descent (including but not limited to self-identified African, African-American, Afro-Latino, Biracial, Black, Black-American, Caribbean, Garifuna, Haitian or West Indian subgroups) in the Wikimedia movement.

We believe that this project would contribute to a positive perception of Wikipedia among users in these communities, and increase skills for contribution to Wikimedia projects.

The methodology we propose is to first introduce a larger audience to the editing process and Wikimedia concept, than to recruit individuals that show personal interest and enthusiasm, and involve them in a group of trainers that would be provided additional training and mentorship, so they could go back to their respective communities and train more people in using Wikimedia tools and projects. We believe that in such way we could build capacity and cohesion of a group of trainers, so they would be willing to continue working on Wikipedia content.

The Workshop during the Caribbean Studies Association Conference will introduce Wikipedia to a diverse group of participants coming from academic circles many of which are Afrodescendants, therefore increasing Wikipedia’s influence and reach. During the edit-a-thon, at least 5 articles about the Caribbean would be improved or created by scholars, thus generating an increase of quality.

Measures of success[edit]

Please provide a list of both quantitative and qualitative criteria that will be used to determine how successful the project is.

You will need to report on the success of the project according to these measures after the project is completed. See the PEG program resources for suggested measures of success.

Improving participation by increasing editor diversity by recruiting new editors from  Afrodescendant community ( people of African descent in New York with appropriate segmented outreach to Afrodescendant self-identified subgroups such as Haitians, Caribbeans, West Indians, Africans, Black-Americans, Blacks, Biracials, African-Americans, Counter-Racists and Afro-Latinos
Activity Goal Indicator Input Methodology
2 outreach workshops at BPL Up to 20 participants per workshop # of individuals present at the workshops

# of newly registered users

Participants list

Wikimetrics tools

Conference workshop Up to 15 participants # of individuals present at the workshops

# of newly registered users

Participants list

Wikimetrics tools

Promotional activities At least 10 blogposts/mailings  of participating organizations

Up to 5 blogposts of Wikimedia chapters

At least one article in the NY press

# of media reports Web clipping
Educating new editors through a series of workshops, and organizing an edit-a-thon related to  topics of interest to Afrodesdendant community.
4-5 workshops with subgroups Up to  10 participants per workshop # of individuals present at the workshops

# of newly registered users

# of active users involved

Participants list

Wikimetrics tools

Workshop in Professor Michelle Materre’s New Media Class at the New School 20-25 participants # of individuals present at the workshops

# of newly registered users

# of active users involved

Participants list

Wikimetrics tools

Training for trainers 2 sessions Up to 5 persons trained as trainers # of individuals present at the workshops

# of active users involved

Participants list

Wikimetrics tools

Edit-a-thon At least 30 articles created or improved

Up to 20 participants

# of individuals present at the workshops

# of active users involved

# of newly registered users

# of articles created or improved

# of bytes added or deleted

Participants list

Projects's page

Wikimetrics tools

Overall project Improved editor diversity # of participants that continue editing 2 months after the completion of the project

# of people that come to multiple sessions

# of ppl of African Descent onboarded;

# of events introducing our target audience to Wikipedia and Wikimedia and teaching them how to edit;

# of events culturally targeted to all subgroups of Afrodescendants-- including non-exclusively anglophone subgroups-- specifically taking into account the linguistic diversity of these subgroups and showcasing those resources to them;

# of articles lists for black editathons containing a substantial list of articles about non-anglophone Black history and non-anglophone notable individuals.

Participants list

Wikimetrics tools Events page

Note: In addition to your project-specific measures of success, you will also be asked to report on some global metrics at the end of your final report. Please keep this in mind as you plan, and we'll support you as you begin your project.

Resources and risks[edit]

Resources[edit]

Venues[edit]

Brooklyn Public Library has offered its space for February workshops despite a short notice period, and it is open for further cooperation.

There are ongoing negotiations with several more spaces for the workshops in March and April. Our strategy is to spread the project to as many spaces as one way of increasing visibility of Wikimedia projects.

Universities[edit]

New School for Social Research. AfroCROWD will partner with Professor Michelle Materre, an African-American professor of film and media studies at the New School for Social Research to offer her Film and New Media class (estimated to be half Afrodescendant based on past attendance) a workshop on Wikipedia and Wikimedia on April 14th. The New School will likely also be the site of an African-American targeted workshop with Black, Brown and Digital, a conference series created and organized by former students and mentees of Professor Materre.

Additional University contacts will be made at the Caribbean Studies Association conference in May which attracts scholars from universities throughout the United States, the Caribbean and the world.

Organization Team[edit]

The proposed project is the result of a partnership between:

  1. Afro Free Culture Crowdsourcing Wikimedia (AFROCroWd), an initiative which seeks to increase the number of people of African Descent who edit Wikipedia and partake in the Wikimedia and free knowledge and culture movements, and
  2. interglider.ORG, a not-for-profit organization that promotes free knowledge and free culture ideas to produce cultural vibrancy and diversity and social and economic equality and innovation.
Workshop trainers
  • Aliceba (talk) 19:45, 19 February 2015 (UTC), a Brooklyn-based free knowledge and free culture proponent who has been aggregating and disseminating Haitian citizen media since 2005 and is a former Francophonia Editor covering the french-speaking blogs of Africa and the Caribbean at Global Voices Online .
  • Milos Rancic, a Belgrade-based veteran Wikimedian with over 10 years in the movement, Wikimedia Language Committee member and chair of Interglider.ORG
  • Milica Gudovic, a Belgrade-based interglider.org activist with extensive experience in educational trainings organization and facilitation
Support
  • Senka Latinovic, a Belgrade-based interglider.org activist and event manager

Evidence of past success[edit]

Alice who will be the on-the- ground NYC based organizer for AfroCROWD has had extensive experience organizing successful and impactful events and campaigns of relevance to Haitian culture and the Haitian community in the United States as well as monitoring and disseminating Haitian online content through her blog, through social media and through the Haitian Blog Aggregator. She has appeared on MSNBC’s Melissa Harris Perry Show, on Al Jazeera, on Jamaica’s Live at 7 with Simon Crosskill, on Swiss channel Télévision Suisse Romande and on Haitian radio. She has been recognized for these efforts through a Black Celebration Award, a mention in the Journal of African American Studies and an invitation to speak at the Diaspora in Dialogue conference in 2013.

(Additional information on Black Celebration Awards.)

See full list of coverage by the press and press appearances.
See full list of talks.

Alice was a communications strategist for Haiti Cultural Exchange’s Selebrasyon!, a six week festival of Haitian culture which premiered in NYC in the summer of 2014. She attracted over 15 media partners for the festival and media outreach culminated in coverage from several local and community blogs and papers including Caribbean Life and a mention in the New York Times.

Since January 2014, she has been the curator and online communications director of the weekly La Caye Musically Thursdays which continually identifies and showcases fresh new Haitian talent. On a weekly basis, the free event attracts over 50 lovers of acoustic Haitian and Afrodescendant music who are eager to preserve and maintain authentic not-necessarily-commercial Haitian, African and Afrodescendant cultural expressions. The weekly free event has had 50 installments, has featured dozens of live acts, and attracted over 2,000 people. Acts have included Paul Beaubrun (Haiti), Jomion & the Uklos (Benin) and Edwin Vazquez (Puerto Rico).
(Additional information.)

Since October 2013, Alice hosts Legacy of 1804 a weekly internet radio show and podcast where she interviews influential or up-and-coming Haitian and Afrodescendant personalities on research, art, culture, law, history and politics. Guests have included critically acclaimed author and MacArthur prize winner Edwidge Danticat. Episodes of the show have been spotlighted by the University of Washington’s Media Department and on Haiti in the Americas, a blog which caters to academics who study Haiti. The show has also received accolades from the community, including from the blog Voices From Haiti.

In the summers of 2013 and 2014, Alice organized Kreyòl Korner, a poetry series hosted by author and comedian MrJeffDess which showcases young poets of African descent. The series has attracted about 300 people and a dozen poets and has received a mention in the New York Daily News and a full interview in the popular Haitian blog Kreyolicious.

In October of 2013 Alice was the online communications director for the New York Theatrical release of the Franco-Senegalese French-language film Tey (Today). Her efforts culminated in a 120 person premiere event at MIST Harlem, and press mentions in the Amsterdam News, the Black Star News, the Haitian Times and Our Time Press as well as several Afrodescendant blogs.
(More information.)

In September of 2013 Alice organized a Pan-African Lit Salon for New York African Restaurant Week 2013 which attracted over 60 people and showcased the work of a half a dozen authors and poets from the Haitian communities in Montreal and New York and from Ghana and the Congo.

In 2006, while Francophonia Editor at Global Voices Online, Alice was a founder and early team lead of Global Voices Lingua a volunteer community which started out translating Global Voices Online content into 6 languages including French, Chinese, Malagasy, Bangla and Spanish. Today the platform translates Global Voices content in 16 languages.While at Global Voices (2005-2007), Alice attended the Open Translation Tools conference in Zagreb, Croatia in 2007, We Media Miami in 2007 and the Global Voices Summit in Delhi, India in 2006.

Risks[edit]

Low response from community

Every time when organizing public events there is a risk of potentially low response of community. However, Alice Backer is a prominent media activist recognized for her efforts in promoting citizen media, and she is currently working on extensive promotional activities, which include all of her personal media outlets and personal contacts.

Low interest for trainers team

During introductory training sessions (February, March and April) we would allocate a slot of time in order to advocate the importance of this work for the Afrodescendant community, and Alice will be main promoter of the project. It would be our priority to deliver trainings in a positive and motivating atmosphere.

Budget[edit]

Please provide a detailed breakdown of project expenses according to the instructions here. See Budget Guidelines.

Grantees are subject to line-item scrutiny of expenses. Changes to the approved budget beyond 10% in any category must be approved in advance.

Project budget table
Number Category Item Description Unit Number of Units Cost per Unit Total Costs Currency WMF Other Funds* Notes
1
Venue Space for workshops session
10
500
5000
$  
5000
At the moment Brooklyn Public Library is donating the space, although we will try to establish connections with more spaces.
2
Food and beverage Refreshments session
10
100
1000
$
1000
   
3
Technical support Web site for AFROcroWd item
1
1000
1000
$  
1000
Developing website for this project and future AFROcroWd activities.
4
Technical support Hosting and administration month
6
150
900
$  
900
 
5
Technical support Mailing administration Month
5
20
100
$  
100
Covering the costs of mailing server
6
Travel Conference attendance Round-trip
1
400
400
$  
400
Round-trip ticket NYC-New Orleans – NYC
7
Travel Conference attendance Day
2
300
600
$  
600
2 days accommodation at the New Orleans conference
8
Publishing Flyers Piece
800
0.125
100
$
100
  The number of fyers is based on the amount of events that would be organised and visited
9
Unforseen costs Unforseen costs      
200
$
200
   
          TOTAL
9300
 
1300
8000
 
                    *Interglider.com will fund costs of technical support
Total cost of project
$9300
Total amount requested from the Project and Event Grants program
$1300
Additional sources of revenue that may fund part of this project, and amounts funded
Approximately $5000 is contribution of Brooklyn Public Library in providing venue free of charge.
$3000 is contribution of Interglider.com, private company owned by Milos Rancic

Non-financial requirements[edit]

See a description of non-financial assistance available. Please inform the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) of any requests for non-financial assistance now.

Requests for non-financial assistance, if any
There are no non-financial requirements.

Discussion[edit]

Community notification[edit]

You are responsible for notifying relevant communities of your proposal, so that they can help you! Depending on your project, notification may be most appropriate on a village pump, talkpage, mailing list. Please paste a link below to where the relevant communities have been notified of this proposal, and to any other relevant community discussions. Need notification tips?

First Event: AfroCROWD at Brooklyn Public Library 2/7 and 2/8[edit]

Event Page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Meetup/NYC/AfroCrowd#AfroCROWD_Articles_Suggestions.28Any_relevant_language.29

(About 50 people in attendance)

Our next events will be 3/14, 4/4 and 4/12

Endorsements[edit]

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