Grants talk:Project/Rapid/UG LK/Wiki Loves Earth 2019 in Sri Lanka

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Application moved to draft[edit]

Hi, Rehman, thank you for submitting this application. It is very exciting to see the first Wikimedia contest organized in Sri Lanka!

Unfortunately, I have had to change the application's status back to "draft," since it was submitted outside of the application window. As stated in our Guidelines and Criteria we only accept applications between the 1st and 15th of every month. Please feel free to change its status back to "proposed" any time within that window in the future; when you do, please email rapidgrants[at]wikimedia[dot]org to notify us.

When you resubmit your application, there are some further modifications we kindly request that you make:

  1. Please note that per our Guidelines and Criteria we cannot fund cash prizes. Please change your prizes to be gift cards, vouchers, gift certificates, or items.
  2. We've been encouraging all our grantees to scale back on t-shirts. We have recognized that they are high-cost items with low-impact and are also not as inclusive as other items, since you're limited in getting specific sizes for participants. Please consider replacing this item in your budget with some other form of swag that is both lower cost and more inclusive (pins, stickers, water bottles, mugs, etc.).
    • If you choose to keep t-shirts in your budget, please limit their number to 5-10 total, with a few being given as prizes and the rest being given to volunteers who will reuse them at future UG LK events.

We look forward to reviewing your application once you resubmit it!

Best regards, LSmith (WMF) (talk) 19:50, 21 April 2019 (UTC)

Hi LSmith (WMF). Apologies for the late reply, and thanks for the feedback. I will change the prize structure to include vouchers; most probably vouchers for camera equipment. Noted regarding tshirts. We will limit them to organisers only, and will not include the year so that it can be reused. We'll also survey the size requirements before making the order. Do let me know if there is any other concerns; I'd be happy to make the necessary adjustments. Thank you for your support! Rehman 03:01, 30 April 2019 (UTC)
Hi again. Just to clarify, is it fine if we go ahead with advertising next month, prior to the grant funding (and reimburse one the funds are released)? Since we have only a month to advertise, I feel there would be better reach if we start early. Also, with regards to the Wikimedia swag, should we budget the prices for those? I recall a grant from some years back, where Wikimedia swag is shipped directly from the Store, and is not budgeted by the grants process. Rehman 05:10, 30 April 2019 (UTC)
Pinging in case you missed the replies: LSmith (WMF). :) Rehman 02:56, 10 May 2019 (UTC)

Further comments from WMF[edit]

Hello, Rehman; I'm chiming in from the Rapid Grants team to address some of your questions and update you on the review process.

  1. We have the intention of approving this grant so you may begin advertising.
  2. I have a question about prizes: am I understanding correctly that you intend to give both the voucher and hotel stay to each winner? If so, before you advertise the prizes themselves, can you please reevaluate this approach? Whereas we want to create incentives for quality photos, we have received many Wiki Loves Earth submissions, and bringing down the costs of some of the prizes might help more countries receive support for the contest. Please let me know what you think.
  3. Before approving, I will check (Monday May 13) regarding swag so that you can adapt the grant request accordingly.

Regards, MMontes (WMF) (talk) 12:21, 11 May 2019 (UTC)

MMontes (WMF), thanks for the reply. Regarding the prizes, this is the first ever Wikimedia contest held in Sri Lanka. Hence I thought having the extra bit of prizes would increase the popularity and the brand itself. With the recent incidents in Sri Lanka, we may need the extra attractiveness of the prizes to encourage people to sign up. Of course, if you don't feel the same, we could always change it. This is the first time I'm organising such an event as well, so I believe you would know better :) Rehman 06:47, 12 May 2019 (UTC)

Further comments from WMF[edit]

Hello, Rehman; thank you for your responses.

  1. Regarding prizes, we have taken a look at prizes offered in similar contexts and we do request that you cut down on each. We can approve the vouchers but we suggest that the hotel stays are eliminated.
  2. Regarding swag, you can make a request at the requesting swag page.
  3. Finally, noting the logistics item in your budget, I want to remind you that we will be requesting receipts for those expenses too (transport, for example), and that it is against the guidelines to pay for individuals' time devoted to logistics.

Once you make the requested adjustment, we will be able to move forward with the approval. Regards, MMontes (WMF) (talk) 00:02, 15 May 2019 (UTC)

Hi Mariel. Noted on the above. I've scaled down the prize amounts, cancelled hotel prizes, cancelled tshirts, and included Wikimedia merchandise instead. The total has been changed from USD 1,831 to USD 1,144 (excluding merchandise). Please do let me know if there is any issue with this arrangement. Also regarding the travel, I will make sure all bills are saved. It will of course be only for travel; we will be using "PickMe", which is the cheapest and quickest option. Rehman 15:56, 15 May 2019 (UTC)

Grant request approved[edit]

Hello, Rehman; thank you for your responses and for making the requested adjustments. We are excited to approve this grant request and we are looking forward to Sri Lanka's photos on this edition of Wiki Loves Earth. Best regards, MMontes (WMF) (talk) 16:07, 15 May 2019 (UTC)

Approval for changes to budget[edit]

Dear Mariel. I just wanted to update you with regards to the 2nd package sent by Sandra from Wikimedia Store (containing notebooks and pens). Unfortunately, unlike the first package, this one is valued at USD 164 (compared to last package's USD 25). Due of the high value for 15 notebooks and pens, this package was detained at customs.

Unfortunately, after a long conversation with Fedex, we understood that it is best to avoid valuing anything over $100 when sending to Sri Lanka, as there is an absurd amount of taxes and charges for packages above $100. In order to clear the 2nd package which is valued at $164, we must pay a total of LKR 30,800 ($174), which is more than the package value itself. I've also emphasized that this is a gift, and also asked if we could submit a new valuation sheet, but they said they cannot accept it.

Hence, I seek your approval to use the "Newspaper" budget, and part of the "Google ads" budget, to cover this cost. We were anyway considering dropping the newspaper ads as the news is currently still full of follow-up reporting of the recent incidents in Sri Lanka. Hence a photo-contest ad in the middle of all that chaos may not be effective at this time. We don't want to use up the incidental budget yet, as we had a few unexpected charges already, such as internet (since internet is metered here, and we have to handle thousands of hi-res files), and a small fee to clear the first package.

I will also send a follow-up email to Sandra, suggesting her to value the next package under $100, so that this doesn't happen again. Looking forward to hearing from you, Rehman 12:03, 13 June 2019 (UTC)

WMF Approval for changes to budget[edit]

Hello, Rehman; we approve the use of the newspaper and Google Ads budgets to cover this fee. Thank you for the work you are doing, MMontes (WMF) (talk) 17:25, 13 June 2019 (UTC)

Thank you, Mariel. Have a great day! Rehman 02:42, 14 June 2019 (UTC)