Grant report approved and a few comments and questions
Hi Sivakosaran, and the Tamil Wikipedia conference team,
Congratulations on completing your grant! Thank you so much for taking the time to write this report for the Tamil Wikipedia 16 Years Celebrations. Here are some comments and questions I had about your report:
- Did you already have the event with 'Thamizharitham'? How did it went? Do you foresee any future partnership with them or with the Jaffna Tamil Sangam as result of the event?
Answer: We had had 2 events with 'Thamizharitham' at 2 schools on Introduction to Tamil Wikipedia. They proposed for more such events, but the Covid-19 outbreak prevented further events. We look forward to have more events with them. Jaffna Tamil Sangam informally invited to have another session on Introduction to Tamil Wikipedia at a teachers training college but it has not been finalized and then the Covid-19 came across. But there is a high chance of forming further partnerships with the Tamil Sangam.
- In which areas do you see a better understanding and collaboration between the Indian and Sri Lankan contributors? Do you feel you fulfilled the goal of the event in terms of the mutual understanding of culture and lifestyle?
Answer: Yes we met the goal. Most of the Indian participants shared the view that the visit made them understand the lifestyle and culture that enable them to discuss with better understanding in discussion pages within Tamil Wikipedia. Particularly, balasubramanian said he realized the bases behind some discussions in the talk pages where he contradicted with Sri Lankan Tamil Wikipedians before and the trip totally changed his viewpoints.
- I'm very sorry to hear that the team was exhausted after the event. Burnout is indeed maybe the most worrying challenge in regards to organizing community conferences. We so much appreciate the efforts that you Sivakosaran and Mayooranathan made to make it happen. At the pre-conf organizing stage, did you make any special efforts to get more volunteers onboard to the organizing team?
Answer: Thank you for the guidance. We knew the team is small and the burden is on 2 of us. It was necessary to organize the event here so that the communities get to know each other better that will be a big positive for the growth of Tamil Wikipedia. We did contact all previously active Wikipedians from Jaffna and some of them could help only to certain extent.
- You make a very good point as for having online volunteers to take on some of the inline organizing work. We will recommend it when possible. Can you give me more examples for online work that you think can be carried out by non local organizers?
Answer: Examples would be to design the certificates to be awarded to the winners and travel booking. The certificates could have been even printed in India and then I could have reimbursed the expenses. Some of the travel bookings could have been done online.
- As for booking travel, for future reference, there in no requirement for the organizers to book all the travels. There is always the option of scholarship recipients booking their own travel and getting reimbursed according to a benchmark that you decide on. Another option is to use a travel agency to do all the booking and to communicate directly with the participants (this can be budgeted in advance as part of the grant proposal).
Answer: Yes, there was some reluctance from the participants. Assigning a travel agency would have made it easier. I suggest WMF includes some notes to think about the costs with a travel agency in mind when working on the budget.
- In a separate communication, you asked to allocate LKR 120,000 (~USD 650) underspend for 2 new user contests focusing on Sri Lanka. This sounds like a good idea (although still needs more clarification) but because it is a substantial amount, it should go through the Rapid Grants program process.
Answer: Thank you. I'll prepare the proposal and work with the Rapid Grants team.
Your complete grant report has been reviewed and accepted, and documentation of expenses has been received. Thank you again for the work you have done and we appreciate the outcomes from the event, and what you learned with WMF and the community. We highly appreciate your effort and were very happy for this opportunity to support a gathering for the Tamil community. We sincerely hope to see more proposals from the community in the future and warmly welcome any updates you would like to provide us about this event. All the best, CAlmog (WMF) (talk) 15:04, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
Thank you very much CAlmog (WMF) and the team for all your guidance and support throughout the event. It's a great pleasure that the report has been accepted. See my comments above for the questions. On behalf of Tamil Wikipedians --Sivakosaran (talk) 16:47, 5 July 2020 (UTC)