Welcome back from Wikimania 2019!
Luganda Wikipedia ; English Wikipedia
I have been able to share some of my experiences and what I learnt at the East African Strategy Summit. I felt somewhat confident discussing and contributing to some sessions illustrations that are based on the knowledge I gained in Stockholm.
Stella Agbley involved me in the editing, preparation and background discussion of a session related to Integrating Wiki-Menstruation to Achieve the SDGs. The original content had been input by someone else but discussion with Stella made it possible for us to draw on our individual experiences thus giving more depth to the content. Click here for a video of the session
Alongside other presenters (Isla Haddow-Flood ,Sam Oyelele and Stella Agbley) , I was given the opportunity to present the experience of Uganda's participation in Gender Gap Projects namely the Wiki Loves Women Campaign . The content focused on the kind of problem(s) we faced before and during the campaign , the kind of interventions we used and the results that we noted (https://wikimania.wikimedia.org/wiki/2019:Diversity/Gender_Gap_projects_across_Africa)
Click here for the presentation
After attending the MediaWiki software and documentation translation marathon, I was able to make a few translations on MediaWiki in Luganda
This being my first Wikimania, I was not so sure who to interact with let alone what to talk about if I were given an audience. My choice of participation in the sessions I attended was guided by advice from a Wikimedian who observed that Wikimedia as it is currently requires a high level of specialisation. As such he urged us to attend only that which we thought was relevant to the direction we intended to take or projects to concentrate on within Wikimedia. I was priviledged to meet and share ideas with the following individuals and I think the connections herein have a long-term potential for growth
- John Cummings (Wikimedian in Residence, UNESCO) - We were able to discuss and make a beginning plan on how to include Uganda's GLAM institutions on Wikidata for an eventual mapping exercise. Earlier I had been able to speak to Beat Estermann regarding the same exercise and he had broken it down for me so this is a long-term partnership in which I will be receiving some instruction on Wikidata and datasets in order to contribute from Uganda.
- Jos Damen (Wikimedia Netherlands) - He was extremely helpful in explaining some of the things I was not able to understand during the Libraries in Wikidata tutorial session . He has since then been able to put me in touch with some of his colleagues working on a digitisation project here at Makerere University. This has helped me identify and approach potential partners for GLAM that our user group in Uganda can benefit from.
- Amir Aharoni - He helped me set up my account on MediaWiki during the MediaWiki software and documentation translation marathon. He also explained to me the importance of editing in one's language . Thanks to his instruction, I have been able to expand the range of projects I contribute to in Wikimedia.
- Florence Devouard - It was the first time to meet her in person after many Skype calls regarding my User Group's involvment in the Wiki Loves Women campaign. She encouraged me to take a leadership role in many discussions I was involved in and also gave me some valuable insights on how I could be further involved with contribution to the various Wikimedia projects.
- Dumisani Ndubane - I was able to learn more about WikiIndaba and come to my own conclusions on how it can contribute to the wider Wikimedia Movement. I have benefited from ongoing instruction on using the Content Translator tool in order to grow local language content within Wikimedia and thus be locally relevant.
- Blossom Ozurumba - Same as Dumisani
- Stella Agbley (Open Foundation West Africa) - from continous interaction, she was able to introduce me to other Wikimedians from Africa and actively put me in touch with them by adding me to the various Telegram groups. She also involved me in the preparation and discussion of some presentations which increased my confidence.
- Éder Porto - we attended Learning Days together and he shared alot about Wikidata in libraries and how I could leverage it as an entry point for professionals in the field of information work (using the concept of cataloguing).
Others that I met , that left a good impression on me and shared their work and contribution were
- Andrew Lih
- Beat Estermann (Berner Fachhochschule)
- Bobby Shabangu (Wikimedia South Africa)
- Cornelius Kibelka (Wikimedia Deutschland)
- Douglas Scott (Wikimedia ZA)
- Hilary K. Thorsen
- Isla Haddow-Flood
- Kelly Foster (Afrocrowd UK)
- Kimberlie Mäkäräinen (Wikimedia Suomi)
- Joy Agyepong (Open Foundation West Africa)
- Justice Okai-Allotey
- Linda Fletcher (AFROCROWD)
- Dr.Lucy Patterson (Wikimedia Deutschland)
- Mohammed Sadat (Wikimedia Ghana)
- Rupika Sharma
- Sherry Antoine (Afrocrowd)
From the Wikimedia Foundation, I was pleased to meet, interact with and learn from
- Asaf Bartov - He trained me during the Learning Days and was always at hand to instruct or clarify on things which I was not clear on. The sessions on Public Speaking and Partnerships were an eye-opener.
- Aubrie Johnson - was able to explain how much further one can leverage social media to further the reach of their user group or community.
- Clara Andrew-Wani - the work she does as an Associate Software Engineer and how it eventually feeds into the work and contributions we make as Wikimedians .
- Eliza Barrios - Through an informal conversation, I was able to know more about the hardware donation programme (why it exists and what it aims to solve and how it contributes to furthering contribution to Wikimedia projects)
- Janeen Uzell - she always took time out to ask me if I was actually learning anything, and if the experience of attending was worthwhile for me.
- Joël Letang - I was able to know more about event organisation of a meeting of that scale.
Though no mention is made of it, I am very grateful for the Learning Days especially the way in which they were conducted as well as topics addressed. I find that what was addressed in the Learning Days is actually better at building my individual capacity so that I can be a more useful asset to my User Group.
I risk waxing lyrical, but I would like to thank the Foundation for making this experience possible thus exposing me to individuals and possibilities that I had not even thought of in some cases. I appreciate that alot has been invested in developing my capacity both as an individual and a member of the community - thank you.