Wikipack Africa is an action pack that contains the WikiFundi software, materials and content that facilitates the outreach work done by local Wikimedia chapters, local Wikimedia User Group or isolated individuals in African countries. The pack allows for outreach, training and contribution to continue when technology, access and electricity outages fail or are not available at all.
Wikipack Africa was designed and created to support the WikiAfrica movement and Wikimedia volunteers across Africa. It has been developed by Florence Devouard and Isla Haddow-Flood in collaboration with Wikimedia CH and supported by the Orange Foundation. The Wikipack Africa and its documentation is licenced under CC-BY-SA 4.0.
What is the Wikipack?
Wikipack Africa is an action pack that contains the WikiFundi software, materials and content that facilitates the outreach work done by local Wikimedia chapters, local Wikimedia User Group or isolated individuals in African countries. The pack allows for training and contribution to continue when technology, access and electricity outages fail or are not available at all.
What is it used for?
The Wikipack Africa empowers volunteer communities to grow as Wikimedia organisations and paves the way for a self-reliant future. Further, it can be adapted to empower educators to assist with access to key educational resources, although it is primarily meant for individuals and groups who want to implement outreach projects
work with galleries, libraries, archives and museums to bring cultural content online;
work with education partners to get educators and students contribute or better understand Wikimedia projects;
to be used by educational partners to work with students as an educational resource
more generally, organise edit-a-thons, photo hunts, workshops, press conferences, etc. to promote Wikimedia projects.
Why is it needed?
The WikiAfrica team has conducted several Wikipedian activation projects across Africa. During the course of these projects, there were some challenges that curtailed the success of the Wikipedians in Residence/Community. These challenges included:
a lack of access to online services in community or rural settings;
personal access being in most cases only by phone;
the inability to access resources via one ‘gateway’ (our solution was the wikiafrica.net/toolkits portal – but if offline, no one could access); and
the lack of marketing and communication material available to hand out to potential partners or trainees.
What does it contain?
Content and software are currently available in French and English.
a raspberry PI 3 server and a 200 GB mini SD card
WikiFundi – an editing platform that provides an offline editable environment that provides a similar experience to editing Wikipedia online. WikiFundi allows for training and contribution when technology, access and electricity outages fail or are not available at all. It enables individuals, groups and communities to learn how to edit Wikipedia, and to work on articles collaboratively. Once completed and connected to the internet, these articles can be uploaded to Wikipedia.
An offline version of Wikipedia encyclopaedia via Kiwix (as well as other Wikimedia projects, such as Wiktionary, Wikisource…)
It has been advertised on the usual channels used by Wikimedians : the African Wikimedian mailing list, WikiAfrica meta page, Wikimedia Foundation blog (digest-wiki-fundi), through Twitter and Facebook, and during Wikimedia organisational events (such as Wiki Indaba, GLAM meetings, Wikimania, etc.)
The Wikipack has been distributed as a one shot to local chapters, usergroups, non official groups or even individuals, provided that they have:
Made an official documented request showing their interest and need,
A group of eager volunteers, or at least a solid plan to encourage volunteers, and
A track record of wikimedian activity in your country.
We are a group of volunteers, how do we get a Wikipack?
If you are a Wikimedian or Wikimedia group working in Africa, you can apply for a Wikipack!! Apply here.