Welcome to this project's final report! This report shares the outcomes, impact and learnings from the grantee's project.
Part 1: The Project
Our main goals for the AfroCuration project was to boost knowledge production about Africa in 10 African languages using our AfroCuration format. Backed by a strong curatorial approach, which combines knowledge, creativity, and activism by immersing young participants in historical and cultural spaces to experience the content they’ll be contributing to on Wikipedia in a completely unique and inspiring way. To achieve this goal, from April 2021 - May 2021, we started the project road map with Felix and Rudolph of WMF and the partnership conversations. Later in June and July 2021, we hired and onboarded a Wikimedian in Residence to help in the project coordination. Also in July 2021, we started talks and planning for the first AfroCuration event in Mozambique with Ethale Publishing as the cultural partner. In September 2021, we held the first AfroCuration in Mozambique which brought together 70 young Makhuwa participants from Mozambique and the launch of the [Wikipedia] in the incubator. At the end of the event, the participants were able to add 172 articles to the incubator. The Makhuwa Wikipedia is now currently at 203 articles. The Makhuwa participants also went further to apply for their first rapid grant to enable them join the AfroCine Contest held in November 2021. In October, we started preparations for the second AfroCuration event in partnership with Constitution Hill Trust and supported by the Wikimedia South Africa. This then event took place in November with 60 young South African participants joining the event to create 24 articles After the event in South Africa, we started planning the third event with the National Gallery of Zimbabwe for the next AfroCuration in Zimbabwe which tool place in February 2022 with the support of a Zimbabwean Wikimedian. This event had in attendance 49 young Zimbabweans and brought about a total of 94 articles Fast forward to March 2022, we had the fourth and fifth events. March 2022 was the peak of the AfroCuration events with two events in one weekend. On on hand, we tested the toolkit which we have been developing with the African Leadership Academy and on the other event, we tested a collaboration between African wiki communities and a cultural partner to produce one AfroCuration. The both events were successful. The African Leadership Academy event produced 73 articles with 18 participants registered on the dashboard here while the AfroCuration Politecnico brought the Politecnico di Milano, Twi Wikipedia User Group and Wikimedia Tanzania together as collaborators with Politecnico di Milano being the major curatorial partner. There was a total of 67 participants with 586 articles produced. The articles were in: Arabic, Swahili, Twi, Chinese, Italian. The dashboards from the events can be found here: dashboard 1 and dashboard 2. This was also the first time participants were introduced to Wikidata during an AfroCuration event. For the month of April 2022, we had a second AfroCuration with the Mozambique community. This is to recruit new editors, improve the skills of the existing ones and also work towards getting the Makhuwa Wikipedia out of the incubator to ensure sustainability. AfroCuration Mozambique (29th-30th April 2022) These activities have resulted to the creation of 1,048 articles with over 300 newly registered editors. Because we also want to get involved with the global wiki community, we joined the Edu Wiki week to talk about the AfroCuration events and our learnings.
- Create at least 300 new articles on wikipedia
- At least 5 cultural institutions trained on how to deliver AfroCuration format, and contribute to Wikimedia projects.
- Creating knowledge across 10 African languages, of which 1 is a new Wikipedia language, as the target African languages that meet the criteria specified by the Wikimedia movement’s language policies and the Wikimedia Incubator.
- Inspire and build the capacity of about 300 new contributors to become knowledge producers
- Build the capacity of, and support, 20 movement organizers in the 10 target African languages
- Create the opportunity for past participants of the AfroCuration under the WAE program to participate in at least 1 webinar, talk series or workshop about the critical consumption of knowledge and translation projects in Africa within the Wikimedia movement.
Important: The Wikimedia Foundation is no longer collecting Global Metrics for Project Grants. We are currently updating our pages to remove legacy references, but please ignore any that you encounter until we finish.
- In the first column of the table below, please copy and paste the measures you selected to help you evaluate your project's success (see the Project Impact section of your proposal). Please use one row for each measure. If you set a numeric target for the measure, please include the number.
- In the second column, describe your project's actual results. If you set a numeric target for the measure, please report numerically in this column. Otherwise, write a brief sentence summarizing your output or outcome for this measure.
- In the third column, you have the option to provide further explanation as needed. You may also add additional explanation below this table.
|Planned measure of success
(include numeric target, if applicable)
|Create at least 300 new articles on Wikipedia||1,048 created||Goal exceeded (349%). We attribute the success to the following factors:
|At least 5 cultural institutions trained on how to deliver AfroCuration format, and contribute to Wikimedia projects.||5 organizations and 2 wiki communities trained||Partnering with mission aligned cultural institutions ensured their constituency engagement and partner ownership of the event. We have partnered with Ethale Publishing in Mozambique, Constitution Hill in South Africa, The National Gallery of Zimbabwe, The African Leadership Academy in South Africa and Politecnico School of Design in Italy. The 2 Wikimedia communities trained were: Twi Wikipedia User Group and Wikimedia Tanzania.|
|Creating knowledge across 10 African languages, of which 1 is a new Wikipedia language,||13 (isiXhosa, isiZulu,Tschivenda, Swahili, Sesotho, Arabic,Twi, Makhuwa, Shona, Ndebele, Sepedi, Igbo) with one language Wikipedia launched in the incubator Makhuwa Wikipedia||The increase of the languages compared to the original goal was due to: partnering with a Pan-African Organization like African Leadership Academy which has students from the entire African continent speaking various languages
and Politecnico School of Design in Italy that invites international students from multiple countries who speak different languages.
|Inspire and build the capacity of about 300 new contributors to become knowledge producers||317||Goal exceeded (5%) due to proper targeting of the underserved communities where well-curated cultural experiences and educational formats are not easily accessible. Working with the cultural partner’s constituencies who were mostly first time Wikipedia users ensured that we have new editors trained and introduced to the Wikimedia world.|
|Build the capacity of, and support, 20 movement organizers in the 10 target African languages||7 (2 individuals/participants, 3 cultural institutions and 2 Wiki Communities)||
|Create the opportunity for past participants of the AfroCuration under the WAE program to participate in at least 1 webinar, talk series or workshop about the critical consumption of knowledge and translation projects in Africa within the Wikimedia movement||5 Past participants from the Makhuwa Community attended the Wiki Indaba Conference and also 45 joined the AfroCine 2021 contest (The month of African Cinema) which they organized themselves in Mozambique.||Giving access to the larger Wikipedia network to our past events participants gives them a sense of empowerment, ensures the continuity of their engagement with the program and hence further knowledge creation. The self- organised contest is a testimony to the growth of the participants’ sense of agency and the will to contribute to the movement in new, creative and unconventional ways, while also encouraging the other participants from communities with existing Wiki User Groups/Affiliates.|
Looking back over your whole project, what did you achieve? Tell us the story of your achievements, your results, your outcomes. Focus on inspiring moments, tough challenges, interesting anecdotes or anything that highlights the outcomes of your project. Imagine that you are sharing with a friend about the achievements that matter most to you in your project.
- This should not be a list of what you did. You will be asked to provide that later in the Methods and Activities section.
- Consider your original goals as you write your project's story, but don't let them limit you. Your project may have important outcomes you weren't expecting. Please focus on the impact that you believe matters most.
Looking back at the whole project, it has been an intense past few months, and been busy trying to set up the back end of all this project, and hold the first AfroCuration event in Mozambique. The first event in Mozambique was a logistical challenge. We did not have the benefit of a local WMF affiliate to lean on, and therefore needed to rely on talented volunteers from the network of our WiR. Additionally, we were holding the event in one language (Portuguese) which our team does not speak, and the editing language was also different still (Emakhuawa/Macua). Therefore the importance and reliance on linguists was higher than anticipated. Lastly, it was a first instance of putting to test the participant recruitment and management system. It worked, but we had learnings we carried forward. We were fortunate to have a contribution from Constantino Warilla as our inspirational speaker. He is a Mozambican musical legend, and gave an uplifting and wise call to action for the youths. The Mozambique community was also very enthusiastic to add content to the Makhuwa Wikipedia and digitize content in their language which was not existing anywhere on the internet.
A pleasant addition to our efforts of the South Africa event was the Vodacom sponsorship of participant data in South Africa. This helped us overcome the cost-barrier that’s so often experienced by our target participants, which when in person we can alleviate. But not with an online event. Secondly, the actual sourcing of majority of the participants came from the Harambee youth accelerator network. The event went well with so much enthusiasm and passion from the young Africans and also support from Wikimedia South Africa.
Another great outcome was from the Zimbabwe event with the National Gallery of Zimbabwe. This was also challenging as there was no existing Wiki User Group in Zimbabwe but not like the Mozambique event. As usual, the young Zimbabweans were enthusiastic and passionate to write in Shona and Ndebele. The event was going well until we had a Zoom shutdown which was later resolved.
More interesting was the last two events we pulled off in one weekend with African students from the Politecnico di Milano and the other event with students from the African Leadership Academy. These events had many first. For example, it was our first hybrid event (online and physical), first event with wikidata contributions, first event with wiki communities contributing (Wikimedia Tanzania and Twi Wikipedia User Group, first event with 3 partners across 2 continents, first event with 6 editing languages across countries. It was also the first time we tested out the toolkit we've been preparing for some months now. It was the peak of the whole AfroCuration series.
The event series was a great learning curve and we don't regret any of it. There were great outcomes like: digitizing the Makhuwa language, launching the Makhuwa Wikipedia in the incubator, edits in over 10 languages, 1048 articles added. We're extremely happy and proud.
If you used surveys to evaluate the success of your project, please provide a link(s) in this section, then briefly summarize your survey results in your own words. Include three interesting outputs or outcomes that the survey revealed.
The links to two of our feedback surveys can be found below:
Three interesting outcomes from these surveys were:
- From all perspectives, it was noted that participants who attended AfroCuration were inspired , and on average were very engaged.
- The root cause of many challenges faced during the event series was connected to the events being mainly online.
- They asked for improvements in the areas of:
- More speakers
- Better choice of time for events
- Include more Wiki communities
- Better meeting platform to allow participant interaction
- Additional budget for follow-up events
Is there another way you would prefer to communicate the actual results of your project, as you understand them? You can do that here!
Methods and activities
Please provide a list of the main methods and activities through which you completed your project.
Below is a list of methods and activities we used
- Decide on curatorial theme and topics
- Establish when and where the event will be held (venue, date, time)
- Decide on technical or other partners and contract partners
- Establish contact with local Wikipedia chapter or user group for support during event
- Created a checklist for tracking progress
- Share the date and venue of the event on social media and other channels
- Send out public call for participation and share sign-up link
- Confirm Wikimedian support
- Identify and contract keynote speaker
- Ensure topics and article list has been created and references have been identified
- Set up direct communications with participants, such as WhatsApp group
- Finalize agenda/running order for the day and share with Wikipedians, speakers, support persons
- Identify the host/MC to ensure the running order of the day and do introductions Ensure there are more than enough participants (not all participants will arrive on the day) and do another call if necessary
- Set up Zoom event and share link and calendar invitation with participants, partners, and Wikimedians
- Share participant checklist, assigned article list and references with participants to ensure all know what to expect and prepare
- Review keynote speaker’s address
- Set up event dashboard
- Ensure all participants have usernames for Wikipedia and online access
- Confirm Wikipedian support
- Confirm technical support roles are all filled
- Communicate with participants to drum up enthusiasm
- Collect participant stories through informal interviews
- Award prizes to participants
- Post live content on social media
- Ensure participants have completed feedback forms
- Approach leaders identified during events to lead engagement
- Post information on social media about the event and share access to articles
- Share participant stories
- Thank Wikipedians and guest speaker
- Introduce participants to Wikipedia community on Africa (see Engagement strategy)
- Share information about the event with media outlets
Please provide links to all public, online documents and other artifacts that you created during the course of this project. Even if you have linked to them elsewhere in this report, this section serves as a centralized archive for everything you created during your project. Examples include: meeting notes, participant lists, photos or graphics uploaded to Wikimedia Commons, template messages sent to participants, wiki pages, social media (Facebook groups, Twitter accounts), datasets, surveys, questionnaires, code repositories... If possible, include a brief summary with each link.
Here is the link to a folder which contains all images, press releases, fliers, slides etc we created during the course of this project AFROCURATION FOLDER
The best thing about trying something new is that you learn from it. We want to follow in your footsteps and learn along with you, and we want to know that you took enough risks in your project to have learned something really interesting! Think about what recommendations you have for others who may follow in your footsteps, and use the below sections to describe what worked and what didn’t.
What worked well
What did you try that was successful and you'd recommend others do? To help spread successful strategies so that they can be of use to others in the movement, rather than writing lots of text here, we'd like you to share your finding in the form of a link to a learning pattern.
- Your learning pattern link goes here
What didn’t work
What did you try that you learned didn't work? What would you think about doing differently in the future? Please list these as short bullet points.
- One of the cultural institutions we planned to work with cancelled due to change in administration. This caused us to think of alternatives to cover up immediately.
=> Next time, we would have more partners than required and keep some on reserve list.
- Overrun with IT management
It was too much to manage whilst focusing on delivering content. => outsource this element of event production
o Made us lose wikipedians o Meant participants were constantly dropping out/signing back in o => Holding Session in Plenary room (dissolving some breakout rooms) Participant interaction (peer to peer) was rather minimal Some helped each other, by responding to each other’s questions. But sometimes they’d take conversation offline and use THEIR own whatsapp group. => We need to design a moment in the sessions to do this (we had it but removed) => Help your neighbour
- Live translation posed a serious challenge
Language barrier Connection issues Grasping participant questions/understanding quickly - Participant issues o Not all had LOGINS for Wikipedia o Participants losing passwords and needing to reset o Not all had started an article
If you have additional recommendations or reflections that don’t fit into the above sections, please list them here.
Next steps and opportunities
Are there opportunities for future growth of this project, or new areas you have uncovered in the course of this grant that could be fruitful for more exploration (either by yourself, or others)? What ideas or suggestions do you have for future projects based on the work you’ve completed? Please list these as short bullet points.
- Yes, we have uncovered new areas for the future growth of this project. We would continue the AfroCuration events collaborations with more wiki communities and also using the toolkit which we have developed for sustainability. To further the project, we've applied for the alliances fund to work in the new areas identified.
Part 2: The Grant
Please copy and paste the completed table from your project finances page. Check that you’ve listed the actual expenditures compared with what was originally planned. If there are differences between the planned and actual use of funds, please use the column provided to explain them.
Our spending has been calculated in this spreadsheet here: Spending sheet
Do you have any unspent funds from the grant?
Please answer yes or no. If yes, list the amount you did not use and explain why.
If you have unspent funds, they must be returned to WMF. Please see the instructions for returning unspent funds and indicate here if this is still in progress, or if this is already completed:
Please answer yes or no. If no, include an explanation. Our expenses documentation can be found here: Expense documentation
Confirmation of project status
Did you comply with the requirements specified by WMF in the grant agreement?
Please answer yes or no. Yes we complied with the requirements.
Is your project completed?
Please answer yes or no. Yes our project was completed on the 30th of April
We’d love to hear any thoughts you have on what this project has meant to you, or how the experience of being a grantee has gone overall. Is there something that surprised you, or that you particularly enjoyed, or that you’ll do differently going forward as a result of the Project Grant experience? Please share it here!
We've done a detailed reflection of our learnings in this google doc. Click to read.