Grants:Project/GastelEtzwane and Mouha.ibs/Offline Wikipedia in Senegal Schools

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Offline Wikipedia in Senegal Schools
summaryAbout 50% of the Senegalese population lives in rural areas, often with little or no internet access. School-aged children represent 25% of the population, which means that a large number of them go to schools in rural regions with no internet. No internet means no Wikipedia, and this project aims to bring off-line Wikipedia to the school teachers so that they can pass this knowledge on to their students.
targetFrench off-line Wikipedia
amount12,000 USD
contact• gabriel(_AT_)
this project needs...
created on23:47, 19 November 2018 (UTC)

Project idea[edit]

What is the problem you're trying to solve?[edit]

What problem are you trying to solve by doing this project? This problem should be small enough that you expect it to be completely or mostly resolved by the end of this project. Remember to review the tutorial for tips on how to answer this question.

A large number of Senegalese schools in rural areas lack any sort of reference material and only have a few old school books available for the teachers. There is most often no significant library, there are no recent encyclopedias, and they lack recent or accurate geographical information.

Students will learn from what their teachers can provide them, and if the teacher has limited resources at his or her disposal, then what can be passed on is also limited. Statistics show that students from these schools face huge difficulties when passing Baccalaureate exams.

On the bright side, many teachers use computers, sometimes a desktop computer, sometimes a laptop. They can access the internet when they are in a big city on weekends, but they most often do not have access to the internet during the week while they teach. This is the case in cities in most African countries and the teachers would then have to use a private data plan, as it is the case in remote schools where there just is no access at all.

Teachers do have access to the internet every once in a while, and the Kiwix program, like Wikipedia, is free to use and to download. And like all free and open source software, the most challenging aspect of distribution is making people aware that the software exists, and that it is free for the taking! There is a definite lack of community awareness regarding off-line Wikipedia.

What is your solution to this problem?[edit]

For the problem you identified in the previous section, briefly describe your how you would like to address this problem. We recognize that there are many ways to solve a problem. We’d like to understand why you chose this particular solution, and why you think it is worth pursuing. Remember to review the tutorial for tips on how to answer this question.

The problem this project plans to address is the absence of an easy, rapid and reliable way to access the treasure-trove of information contained in Wikipedia. The Kiwix program will provide access to this information for those schools lacking books and other reference material. Teachers will then be able to use this information while preparing their lessons or even have the encyclopedia on hand while they are teaching in front of their students.

A new teaching tool such as off-line Wikipedia has to be introduced to the teachers, and they will need some training and practice so that they can adopt it as one of their teaching aids and modify the way they prepare lessons. School authorities also need to be informed about the Kiwix program, and their approval must be obtained.

This program aims to help schools in remote areas, but teachers are like teachers the world over, which means that there is often a lot of opposition to the use of Wikipedia in classrooms. This project aims to reduce this opposition by providing off-line Wikipedia as a tool and reference material for the teachers who will then be free to start using it when they feel ready.

The offline Wikipedia in Senegal Schools project is a « Train the Trainers » project: between 12 and 15 future trainers will attend a seminar teaching them about off-line Wikipedia, the Kiwix program, how to copy, install and update the files, the mobile Apps and so on. They will then go out to remote schools in the region of Thiès or in neighboring regions (Senegal is divided into 14 regions) and in turn run a seminar presenting Kiwix to the teachers. This seminar will be part of the certification process.

The provision of kindle can also help the teachers to impart knowledge on the community children. There have been evidenced of such learning in Ghana which helps to introduce children to the use of ICT in learning.

Project goals[edit]

What are your goals for this project? Your goals should describe the top two or three benefits that will come out of your project. These should be benefits to the Wikimedia projects or Wikimedia communities. They should not be benefits to you individually. Remember to review the tutorial for tips on how to answer this question.

  • Train twelve offline Wikipedia users so that they can, in turn, run workshops for schools in remote areas.
  • Make the teachers in the target schools aware of off-line Wikipedia and demonstrate through workshops that they can find the information they need in Wikipedia.
  • Provide these school teachers with Kiwix off-line Wikipedia and organize with them a means for obtaining regular updates. Show the teachers how to copy the program so that they may share it with their colleagues from other schools (once a year teachers will be going to other regions in Senegal to oversee baccalaureate and other statewide school exams).

Project impact[edit]

How will you know if you have met your goals?[edit]

For each of your goals, we’d like you to answer the following questions:

  1. During your project, what will you do to achieve this goal? (These are your outputs.)
  2. Once your project is over, how will it continue to positively impact the Wikimedia community or projects? (These are your outcomes.)

For each of your answers, think about how you will capture this information. Will you capture it with a survey? With a story? Will you measure it with a number? Remember, if you plan to measure a number, you will need to set a numeric target in your proposal (i.e. 45 people, 10 articles, 100 scanned documents). Remember to review the tutorial for tips on how to answer this question.

How will you know if you have met your goals?

Train the trainers
  1. The initial Train the trainers seminar will last two days, spaced a few days apart, and the trainees will be conducting their first workshop as part of their learning experience. The target schools will be visited after the workshops are over and the teachers surveyed. The feedback provided by this survey and the difficulties encountered during the workshops will be discussed the second day of the seminar.
  2. The trainees who have successfully passed the seminar will be ready to go out to other schools hold more workshops. This project aims to be self-sustaining and financially independent: the following workshops will be funded by the schools themselves, or by other donors.
Offline Wikipedia Awareness
  1. The workshop seminars held in outlying schools will enable Teachers to try out and test the Kiwix offline Wikipedia program. Terranga is an important concept in Senegal: this Wolof word symbolizes not only hospitality but also the way you treat your guest by offering him the very best you have. The teachers attending the workshops will not only get snacks and a meal, they will also be able to take the entire Wikipedia encyclopedia home with them. A gift of knowledge is priceless.
  2. Once a few teachers have been trained in the use of offline Wikipedia and the Kiwix program, others will want it as well. We hope that knowledge of these workshops will spread by word of mouth, and that for each successful event at least two other school districts will also want to host a workshop. The teachers attending the workshop will be contacted after a two month period so that they may fill out a second survey or be interviewed about the way they use Kiwix. The feedback collected by these surveys will enable the trainees to fine-tune the workshops that they run.
Providing Kiwix & updates
  1. The teachers attending the workshops will receive a USB key pre-loaded with the Kiwix software, Wikipedia and other education ZIM files. Part of the workshops will be about copying and sharing files (including strategies to minimize exposure to computer viruses). Simple actions like copying a USB key seem quite daunting until they have been done once, then they become easy. The teachers will have had this experience during the workshops and will be able to copy the files for their friends and colleagues.
  2. A central location will be designated as a repository for the offline Wikipedia files and to receive updated versions. USB keys are fragile in the long term, both physically and by viral infections, so teachers will be able to go there to replace their USB key after it has been damaged. These central locations will be able to record the number of users they serve.

Do you have any goals around participation or content?[edit]

Are any of your goals related to increasing participation within the Wikimedia movement, or increasing/improving the content on Wikimedia projects? If so, we ask that you look through these three metrics, and include any that are relevant to your project. Please set a numeric target against the metrics, if applicable.

Do you have any goals around participation or content?

This project aims to spread the use of Kiwix and offline Wikipedia in Senegalese schools, specifically targeting school teachers. These schools will be located in remote regions with very little, very poor or no internet access at all.

  1. Total participants: We will know the exact number of trainees, between 12 and 15. We will also know the number of teachers at every workshop held in a school, approximately 20 teachers per school.
  2. Number of newly registered users: Between 12 and 15 trainees and 2 new users per school. This aim of this project is to spread awareness of offline Wikipedia. Once the teachers know about Kiwix and offline resources like Wikipedia they will then be able to contribute with their classes using a project such as WikiFundi, or become an active contributor when they are in a region with internet access.
  3. Number of content pages created or improved, across all Wikimedia projects: 50 pages (2 per trainee, 1 or 2 by the new users recruited during the school workshops).
  4. Two grantee-defined measures: One survey will be conducted two months after the workshops.

Project plan[edit]


Tell us how you'll carry out your project. What will you and other organizers spend your time doing? What will you have done at the end of your project? How will you follow-up with people that are involved with your project?

Events Details Timeframe
Preliminaries Liaise with offline Wikipedia specialists in Thiès (Senegal), recruit up to 15 trainees for the project, find a location for the "Train the Trainers" seminar, identify up to 15 target schools in remote areas, set up at least one visit to each school by the offline Wikipedia specialists. Spring/Summer 2019
Set up Create or update a WikiProject page: include expected schedule; set up project website, social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter). Determine the number of trainees, contact target schools, advertise and recruit teachers for the workshops, assign a school to each trainee. September 2019
Training Seminar (day 1) Refresher Course
- Introduction to Wikipedia (navigation, reliability, fact checking articles, missing articles related to Africa...)
- Crash course on contributing (account creation, editing basics, sourcing, references...)

Running a seminar

Trainees will be able to replicate this part of the seminar when they hold their own workshops
- Hospitality (snacks and drinks)
Kiwix & Offline Wikipedia
- Introduction to Kiwix
- +/- of the multiple formats (USB key, SD card, local installation on PC or tablet, Smartphone App, WiFi hotspot...)
- Comparing Kiwix and online Wikipedia (if the internet connection is available)
Copying and installing
- Workshop (copying, installing, recognizing situations where it will not be possible
- Discussion of how to obtain upgrades (this will be decided during the seminar, when the trainees run their workshops, the teachers will be informed)

Start of individual missions

- The trainees will receive all the material we are providing for their workshops during the day (guides, cheat sheets, checklists, hardware, software...). This will be checked before the end of the seminar.
October 2019
Workshops Each trainee will be in charge of running a workshop in one of the target schools identified in September.
- Workshop based on part 2 of the seminar
- Visit by one of the trainers
- Hospitality (snacks and drinks)
- Survey
October 2019
Training Seminar (day 2) Feedback analysis
- Observations made by the trainers during the visits
- Survey forms filled out by teachers

Future steps

- Hospitality (snacks and drinks)
- Fundraising
- Survey forms for the trainees
- Certification ceremony
October 2019
Follow-up survey A follow-up survey will be sent out to the trainees and a different survey will be sent out to the teachers. The results will be made available to the trainees. January 2020
2nd Follow-up survey A second follow-up survey will be sent out to the teachers at the time of or right after the end of year exams, before the teachers head back to their home-towns for the summer break. The teachers who did not respond to the first follow-up survey in January, or this second one, will be contacted individually. July 2020


How you will use the funds you are requesting? List bullet points for each expense. (You can create a table later if needed.) Don’t forget to include a total amount, and update this amount in the Probox at the top of your page too!

Project coordination
  • International phone calls, postage, small trips - 200 USD
  • Air travel for trainer - 800 USD
  • Transport between airport and Thiès - 2 x 14,000 CFA - 50 USD
  • Food and lodging for trainer (7 days @ 12,000 CFA) - 84,000 - 145 USD
  • Project management Switzerland - 100 USD/mo x 10 months - 1,000 USD
  • Project management Senegal - 400 USD/mo x 10 months - 4,000 USD
  • Incidentals - 1,000 USD
  • 16 128 Gb Internet-in-a-Box devices (16 x 50 USD) - 800 USD
  • 20 64 Gb Flash drive (20 x 18,000 CFA) - 360,000 CFA - 620 USD
  • 20 64 Gb SD card (20 x 18,000 CFA) - 360,000 CFA - 620 USD
  • 1 x small laptop 299 CHF - 300 USD
Setup & school selection
  • Trips to target schools (15 schools @ 5000 CFA) - 75,000 CFA - 130 USD
  • Gifts to school directors (15 64 GB USB keys @ 18,000 CFA) - 270,000 CFA - 460 USD
  • Venue - 2 x 60 USD - 120 USD
  • Data - 17 x 5,000 CFA - 85,000 CFA - 145 USD
  • T-shirts - 25 x 6,000 CFA - 150,000 CFA - 260 USD
  • Notebooks, guides, cheat sheets, etc (20 @ 15 USD) - 300 USD
  • Lunch - 2 x 20 @ 2,000 CFA - 80,000 CFA - 140 USD
  • Snacks and drinks - 2 x 60 USD - 120 USD
  • Trainee travel - 15 @ 5,000 CFA - 75,000 CFA - 130 USD
  • Travel by trainers - 3 x 10,000 CFA - 30,000 CFA - 50 USD
  • Snacks and drinks - 15 x 20 USD - 300 USD
  • 1st follow-up - 15 @ 2,000 CFA - 30,000 CFA - 50 USD
  • 2nd follow-up - 15 @ 10,000 CFA - 150,000 CFA - 260 USD
Grand total
  • 12,000 USD

Community engagement[edit]

How will you let others in your community know about your project? Why are you targeting a specific audience? How will you engage the community you’re aiming to serve at various points during your project? Community input and participation helps make projects successful.

This is a very good project for community inclusion/children inclusion for equitable quality education. This, it needs to be announced in all religious spaces. Community stakeholders should be met to accept it because their opinions and influences will help in massive participation.

The project will be announced in different places on the Wikimedia web sites : the « Bistro » (French Village Pump), WikiAfrica, etc. There will also be announcements on different mailings lists and within Wikimedia France and Wikimedia CH. This project is focused on offline communities in Senegal, in the area surrounding Thiès. There will be press releases with the local newspapers.

This project is a essentially trial project so that other African Wikimedia communities can benefit from the outcomes and conduct similar projects in their countries. In order for these projects to succeed in the long term, funding must come from outside the Wikimedia movement. A successful outcome will make fundraising easier for the following ones.

Get involved[edit]


Please use this section to tell us more about who is working on this project. For each member of the team, please describe any project-related skills, experience, or other background you have that might help contribute to making this idea a success.

  • Gabriel Thullen (GastelEtzwane) is a Geneva (Switzerland) Computer Science high school teacher, as well as teacher trainer in computer science. He has been involved with making computer educational resources available offline since the 1990's. A Kiwix (offline Wikipedia) project with Senegalese schools was described in the Education Outreach newsletter:
  • Ibrahima Diop (Mouha.ibs) is a Senegalese offline Wikipedia specialist. He uses Kiwix software at work when he gives courses and training, and he has done hundreds of installations of the Kiwix software, and trained as many new offline Wikipedia users.
  • Mamadou Diop (Boydiop2) is a Senegalese offline Wikipedia specialist. He is a student and has done many dozens of installations of the Kiwix software for fellow students and student associations. He has also trained medical personnel on the WikiMed Internet-in-a-Box device.

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, talk page, mailing list, etc.--> Please paste links below to where relevant communities have been notified of your proposal, and to any other relevant community discussions. Need notification tips?

The community will be notified this week end. Will post the links tomorrow or Sunday.


Do you think this project should be selected for a Project Grant? Please add your name and rationale for endorsing this project below! (Other constructive feedback is welcome on the discussion page).

  • I recently saw Mouha.ibs and GastelEtzwane present their Kiwix projects at the Wikiconvention Francophone 2018 [1] in Grenoble. It is an inspiring endeavour and they have dedicated most of these last 5 years to it. If WMF wishes to make more knowledge more freely available to the global south, supporting Mouha.ibs and GastelEtzwane's project is a great way to do it. I hope that their application will be considered as seriously as it deserves. Adélaïde Calais WMFr .
  • Looks like a well-designed project to me, and based on past activities by GastelEtzwane that I am aware of, this should have solid impact as well. -- Daniel Mietchen (talk) 16:57, 3 December 2018 (UTC)
  • Support! Michaelgraaf (talk) 06:56, 4 December 2018 (UTC)
  • Strong support - looks like a well planned project that will have a significant impact. Walkerma (talk) 18:47, 4 December 2018 (UTC)
  • Support, The people of Africa need this kind of project. The potential is huge over the long term. · · · Peter (Southwood) (talk): 06:58, 5 December 2018 (UTC)
  • Very important! Theklan (talk) 22:03, 20 December 2018 (UTC)