One grant was obtained rather unexpectedly this fall, when the Beck Foundation suggested they would be interested in supporting a Wikijunior project. They would like to give Wikimedia a 10,000 USD grant to produce content for short encyclopedia-style children's books on specific subjects. The current plan is to create content for 48-page print books on Geography, Animals, and Astronomy. See Wikijunior and the associated Wikibooks projects for more detail as well as the special report in the project section of this letter.
In January 2005, we were granted $40,000 by the Lounsbery Foundation. Our grant application specified we would spend this in the following way 1) to cover our daily operations, 2)to enable us to launch our new Wikispecies project, and 3)to continue to improve our existing projects.
Thank you very much for the trust offered by both Foundations.
There was also an important meeting with the Open Society Institute Information Project in New York during December. They invited the Wikimedia board to come join them for part of their yearly board meeting, and are interested in helping Wikipedia expand into key languages and into the developing world. No specifics were decided on, but ideas for specific projects to develop better Arabic-language content or to increase the audience of contributors from African countries would be particularly welcome.