Grants:PEG/User:Aliceba/Empowering Afrodescendant women in Wikipedia

No report is known for this activity, but there is Grants:PEG/Aliceba/Outreach to Afrodescendant community in US/Report.

This Wikimedia Foundation grant has a fiscal sponsor. Wikimedia NYC administered the grant on behalf of Aliceba.

Empowering Afrodescendant women in Wikipedia
Create more articles about Afrodescendant women on Wikipedia including non-Anglophone women. See also Grants:PEG/Aliceba/Outreach to Afrodescendant community in US.
targetplease add a target wiki
strategic priorityplease add a strategic priority
start date1 July
start year2015
end date31 December
end year2015
budget (USD)$6280 USD
grant typeindividual
created on12:04, 30 March 2015 (UTC)

Project idea edit


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

Afrodescendant women globally and of all language groups are under-represented among Wikipedia editors and the groups that they belong to are under-represented in Wikipedia. It is believed that 90% of Wikipedia editors are male and white. The Haitian Wikipedia in particular ( has one of the worst male/female article ratios of any wikipedia.

What is your solution? edit

  • Through the existing AfroCROWD initiative and audience of past participants, implement an outreach campaign to make sure that Afrodescendant women are targeted by the policies Wikipedia is and will create as a result of the Inspire campaign to increase female participation in WIkipedia.
  • Raise awareness at AfroCROWD edit-a-thons about the known gender imbalances in Wikipedias of all relevant languages.
  • Offer childcare as often as possible to increase the participation of women in AfroCROWD edit-a-thons.
  • Outreach to female Afrodescendant scholars to increase their awareness of the gender and multicultural gaps in WIkipedia and of the benefits of teaching with Wikipedia. (Examples of projects to showcase would be Barnard College's class on the works of African-American author Ntozake Shange and its use of Wikipedia.)
  • Begin turning the tide of the disproportionately low number of articles on women in the Haitian Wikipedia by attempting to increase the number of female editors to the platform. Incentivize this increase by encouraging scholars in Haiti to give students credit for editing Wikipedia.

Goals edit

  • At least 50% of all articles created in AfroCROWD should be about women
  • At least 50% of all attendees of AfroCROWD workshops should be women
  • Facilitate the incorporation of Wikipedia in curriculum by at least 2 Afrodescendant scholars
  • At least one workshop provided to scholars in Haiti or to the Haitian Studies Association Conference about the gender imbalance in the Haitian Wikipedia

Background on AfroCROWD edit

AfroCROWD is a new initiative which seeks to increase the number of people of African descent who actively partake in the Wikimedia and free culture and software movements. Worskhops target individuals who self-identify as African, African-American, Afro-Latino, Biracial, Black, Black-American, Caribbean, Garifuna, Haitian or West Indian, among others.

Kickoff edit

On February 7th and 8th in Brooklyn, kickoff events took place at the Brooklyn Public Library which attracted about 50 participants. We introduced participants to Wikipedia and Wikimedia including resources in some of the many languages spoken by our target population: French, Garifuna, Haitian Kreyòl, Igbo, Yoruba, Spanish and Twi. We also announced the new Garifuna language Wikipedia incubator, the fruit of a collaboration between AfroCROWD and Wikimedia NYC.

HaitiCROWD edit

Afrocrowd’s second event was HaitiCROWD which focused on resources in the Haitian Kreyòl, French and English Wikipedias. In addition Afrocrowd's founder Alice Backer, Wynnie Lamour of the Haitian Creole Language Institute and Carmel Balan of the Port Académie Digital Library of Haitian Studies offered presentations. Twenty people attended. We discussed growing the Haitian Wikipedia, which is now available free of charge to many Haitians in Haiti through the Digicel/Wikimedia Foundation Wikipedia Zero initiative. Four articles were created and four were improved.

Future events edit

  • Our next event is AfrolatinoCROWD on 4/12 which will showcase Wikipedia resources in Spanish, Garifuna and English.
  • On May 3rd we will facilitate an edit-a-thon at the Afrofuturisms conference at the New School.
  • We will also hold a targeted Training the Trainers event in May.
  • In June we will be holding AfricaCROWD and our first cycle final Edit-a-Thon at the Brooklyn Public Library.

In the news edit

Get Involved edit

Participants edit

  • I'd love to help interface this project with both the general programs of Wikimedia NYC and the Wiki Education Foundation, and to personally assist at wiki-workshops, events, and at universities.--Pharos (talk) 18:42, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Volunteer Maintaining documentation, evaluation Godzzzilica (talk) 11:39, 6 April 2015 (UTC)

Endorsements edit

  • I have been thrilled to see the community of support which Aliceba has been able to convene both in person in New York City and online in Facebook and other communication platforms. Alice already has a proven history of success in bringing together rather large groups of people from diverse ethnic, cultural, and language backgrounds and introducing them both to new media and Wikipedia. I like especially that Alice's events include Wikipedia reader outreach as well as editor outreach, because that meets the needs of some of the populations which she is serving.
It is encouraging to see that so many of the people who attend the events she hosts are interested in sharing information on Wikipedia. I have seen myself how her choice in catering has influenced whether people stay for hours or whether they leave after a short while, and I think Alice is mindful of the needs of the attendees and has enough event planning experience to budget for the right amount of event supplies. I rarely see working heads of family at Wikimedia community events but Alice's events have attracted this population in the past and I wish it were easier for her to promise childcare to this group.
This is a proposal worth reviewing.
One problem that exists with this event as well as most Wikimedia community events is that the outcomes are not sufficiently documented on-wiki. Documentation remains confusing but not all events are currently archived nor are metrics from them adequately presented. I wish for more administrative support for the back end, some how. Blue Rasberry (talk) 14:58, 30 March 2015 (UTC)
Response by Alice -- Though we have not fully fine tuned our archiving method, all of our events, event results and participants signins are documented here: Specifically, the articles created/improved list is here. Details for HaitiCROWD, our March event, are here. We have also been rigorous at having participants fill out evaluation forms and giving consent to have their usernames tracked through wikimetrics through this form which a majority of participants have filled out. --Aliceba (talk) 17:52, 30 March 2015 (UTC)
@ Blue Rasberry Would you be willing to point out to examples of well documented projects, since we do invest time in mainting project pages, but if you can not reach them, we are not doing it well.Thanks in advance! Godzzzilica (talk) 20:31, 31 March 2015 (UTC)
Godzzzilica Documentation across all Wikimedia projects is almost uniformly insufficient. Almost all of them are managed by volunteers, and volunteers almost never have interest in reporting metrics or outcomes. If this project is funded, and I think it should be, then paid staff attention should be focused on doing metrics reporting, documenting communication, and reporting outcomes. Such reporting would meet the usual expectations of typical grant-funded projects in the larger world outside of Wikimedia-space, and also be useful in helping the Wikimedia community to establish norms for what outcomes are possible if volunteers commit to supporting events.
I am not going to share any model reporting page because I think no model of reporting has broad community support. I would suggest doing whatever reporting comes naturally to this team, and that they collect whatever metrics are useful to them, and make an effort to share their findings in whatever nice way seems best. The bar to overcome is the standard or no reporting, so anything is better than that. 16:18, 1 April 2015 (UTC)
  • AFROCrowd has helped me realize that I am a black techie--it's given me the confidence and space to grow as an individual and realize what more the black community can contribute to Wikipedia!Seaseapb (talk) 04:13, 1 April 2015 (UTC)
  • I support this idea because there needs to be a more accurate representation of women using Wikipedia. As a woman, educator, and scholar, I'm often made to feel irrelevant. Being able to take charge and contribute directly on a platform that is used by so many (i.e., Wikipedia) would be a step in a positive direction: further growing the spaces in which women of afrodescent can actively and powerfully participate. Kreyolnyc (talk) 02:26, 31 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Targeting the Afrodescendant female population, of which I am a part, is a brilliant way of mending the great representational gap present on Wikipedia, the tech world, and academia. As a participant, I have been gladly welcomed by the AfroCrowd community created by Alice. This community represents the yearning among people of color, many of whom are women, to have their stories represented equally as members of the world. Although I have had a username for over 7 years, it has taken this initiative for me to utilize it for what it was intended - a tool to document the great knowledge of the world, freely for the world. I proudly endorse the work of Aliceba because of her tireless dedication to building a proactive community of Wiki builders whose means are as important as its ends . -- Kp2149 (talk) 08:10, 31 March 2015 (UTC)
  • The specific quality of these, is that they ate one of the very few successful attempts to reach out to people in the US who speak other languages than English. New York City ought to be an ideal place for this, but so far only this project has worked. At the sessions held so far there have been a people working in a mix of languages: Haitian Creole, French, Spanish, and English; some of them have worked simultaneously in two languages, some in translating from one to another, some in their single preferred language. They preserving as our model for similar work with other language communities. DGG (talk) 02:14, 1 April 2015 (UTC)
  • If it's not a CoI to endorse the project on which I am working, as well :) Millosh (talk) 04:46, 1 April 2015 (UTC)
  • This ambitious project has potential to help in so many different areas: underrepresented language communities online, gender and ethnic participation imbalances, outreach to both scholars and targeted community groups. Mozucat (talk) 15:03, 1 April 2015 (UTC)
  • I strongly support this initiative, which has shown itself capable of countering underrepresentation on all fronts and in multiple communities on-the-ground in NYC, and can set a great precedent for future global community growth and improvement.--Pharos (talk) 16:07, 1 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Well-detailed proposal with high potential of getting invovlement from the right audience. I particularly like the focus on Haitian community, hope to see the real impact there — NickK (talk) 22:40, 7 April 2015 (UTC)

Expand your idea edit

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Expand your idea into a grant proposal

Project plan edit

Activities edit

Project activities will be a natural follow-up to AfroCROWD's current activities on improving editor diversity by recruiting people of African descent and organizing edit-a-thons related to topics of interest to the Afrodescendant community. However in the period July – December activities will have strong gender component.


  • Outreach to female Afrodescendant scholars to increase their awareness of the gender and multicultural gaps in WIkipedia and of the benefits of teaching with Wikipedia.
    • Organizing 2 workshops for female academics - one during Haitian Studies Association Conference in Montreal in October and one in NYC. This will be done with the support of members of the Wiki Education foundation who are part of Wikimedia NYC.
  • Organize 2 edit-a-thons in the period July– December ensuring that female participation is at least 50%. (Based on current community demand we expect to also support edit-a-thons organized by community mostly at their cost.)
  • Organize outreach campaign to make sure that Afrodescendant women are aware of the gender gap in Wikipedia and the need to come up with creative ideas to involve women. AfroCROWD is being invited to events related to free knowledge and we seize all opportunities to promote our work and spread our reach. These opportunities are used to attract potential participants to ongoing and future events. Campaign activities:
    • Timely announcements for public events,
    • Updating web site for AfroCROWD with blog about gender related issues
    • Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram for AfroCROWD and the project
    • Various in person meetings with target subgroup leaders
    • Attending events related to the International Decade for People of African Descent
    • Identifying and attending events by technology oriented Afrodescendants

Timeline: July – December

Budget edit

  • Edit-a-thon – light refreshments 2 x $100 = $200
  • Edit-a-thon - Printed material 2 x $50 = $100
  • Livestream costs - 3 x $100 = $300
  • Transportation NYC - $200
  • Babysitting - 3 events 3 x $60 = $180
  • Workshop costs NYC – light refreshments $100
  • Workshop costs NYC – printed material $50
  • Public solicited Edit-a-thon costs - Printed materials $50 X 3= $150 (This will not be used if we do not get edit-a-thon assistance requests. This is for edit-a-thons that we are asked to assist-like Afrofuturisms-- rather than our own.)
  • Project manager at 10hr/week, $25/hr for ~200 hours $5,000

Community engagement edit

AfroCROWD is a fairly young initiative, but it has already succeeded in mobilizing Afro descendant community to get involved in the Wikipedia movement. Our events are well planned and carefully executed and they attracted large interest in the communities speaking Spanish, Garifuna, Haitian Kreyòl, Igbo, Twi or Yoruba. AfroCROWD events host significant proportion of women who are interested to continue editing -- as some expressed in the endorsement section of this proposal. With this project we would like to make sure that each future event clearly demonstrates dedication to increasing diversity not only related to multicultural gaps, but also related to gender.

We will continue as we have thus far to ask participants to fill out workshop evaluations.

We boast about a dozen outreach partners including Afrolatino Project, Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute, Black, Brown and Digital, Afridiaspora, Haitian Creole Language Institute of New York, Yoruba Cultural Center etc.

Sustainability edit

Current AfroCROWD activities and the number of interested participants have shown that there is a huge interest in the Afrodescendant community to be involved in sharing in the sum of all human knowledge. We have a unique opportunity to make sure that all our activities also take into account a gender component. AfroCROWD is at the moment running a process of establishment of trainers team that would also greatly contribute to sustainability of the project. The targeting of female scholars so that they can offer credit to their students for the editing of Wikipedia should also increase sustainability.

Measures of success edit

Regarding events we will use the following indicators

  • At least 15 participants per event
  • At least 50% of participants to be women
  • At least 40 articles created or updated during edit-a-thons (At least 30 if we get sollicitations by community to facilitate their edit-a-thons)
  • At least 50 % of articles related to gender issues
  • Female scholars involved in community
  • At least 150 women reached by campaign

Project team edit

  • Aliceba -- Founder, Director, Outreach, Training
  • Abhisuryawanshi -- Organizer, Development consultant
  • DGG - Advisor, continued training support at workshops
  • Pharos - Academic trainer and advisor
  • Godzzzilica - Outreach support, technical support, Development consultant
  • Millosh - Advisor
  • Future project manager - Support in outreach and follow-up with participants between events, community management and administrative duties for both AfroCROWD and Wikimedia NYC

Community notification edit

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