Wikimedia Community User Group Uganda/2022 - 2023 Annual Report

The Wikimedia Community User Group Uganda has actively participated in various initiatives and programs during the period of July 2022 to May 2023. This report provides an overview of the activities carried out by the user group, including participation in international photography contests, educational programs, edit-a-thons, and community events. The user group's commitment to promoting cultural heritage preservation, gender equality, and knowledge sharing is showcased through successful collaborations with diverse stakeholders and increased participation from volunteers. The user group has made significant progress in achieving its goals and fostering the growth of the Wikimedia movement in Uganda.

Wiki Loves Monuments 2022 edit

Wiki Loves Monuments is an annual international photography contest that encourages the documentation and preservation of cultural heritage sites. The Wikimedia Community User Group Uganda has been participating in the contest since 2017, organizing events and photo hunts to capture images of Uganda's cultural heritage.

In 2022, 10 participants uploaded 222 photos as part of Wiki Loves Monuments in Uganda. The contest was officially launched with an online event on September 11, 2022. During the event, new participants received training on contributing to Wikimedia Commons, and photo hunts were organized to focus on sites and monuments that had no or very few photos.

One of the main challenges faced by the organizers is the lack of an updated list of sites and monuments in Uganda that need photos. To address this, Wikimedia Uganda sought assistance from Wikimedia Sweden to develop a workflow using tools like Wikidata to streamline the process for identifying sites and monuments that require documentation.

Wiki Soccerthon 2022 edit

Wiki Soccerthon is a diversity and content program aimed at documenting and increasing content about notable football clubs, individuals, stakeholders, and soccer activities in Uganda. The project has been running every year since 2020.

In 2022 we made an outreach to the seven regions outside Kampala, the aim was to embark on content generation with some members from the eight FUFA regions and the user group volunteers updating content for higher level, notable clubs, or leagues.

We discussed having a user group team that will be involved in these (social) activities and there was interest from other Wikimedians from across the movement who reached out for discussions or collaboration on carrying out a similar activity. The user group volunteers welcomed the idea of having a social activity in the form of a user group team for interested volunteers that would also identify, and update content on association football.

Training and pairing of volunteers in four regions was successfully done to identify, organize, and update content pages for the notable clubs in the top league(s). User group volunteers paired with new volunteer members from the selected regions and discussed;

  • viable option of working together with an established team, association, or organized league/competition was also discussed by the User group volunteers.
  • local collaborations and knowledge sharing with communities like OpenStreetMap, and Wikimedians in Kigali, Cameroon, and Ghana.

We encounter some challenges were some of the target associations needed written documentation from the mother governing body in order to write content or get involved in project activities., some of the participating volunteers in the target region were part of the clubs that were being written about which created a potential conflict of interest scenario when contributing content, and, some of the user group volunteers who had just joined the project were not familiar with the target volunteers’ expectations, and the nature of the project that involves offline and online engagement activities, as they were mostly used to online content generation competitions. Others were not yet technically skilled in on-wiki contributions in the area of association football.

One of the solutions for the above challenges is being tested by having a dedicated team of user group volunteers that would carry out social activities under this project, and also update the relevant content on association football.

Wiki For Refugees 2022 edit

#WikiForRefugees is an initiative led by Platform Africa and the Wikimedia Community User Group in Uganda. The program aims to co-create and enhance information about Refugee Settlements in Uganda on Wikipedia. It consists of intensive training, an edit-a-thon, and the creation of multimedia content.

In February 2023, refresher training sessions were conducted for various refugee settlements, covering topics such as Wikidata, Wikimedia Commons, and article translation. The results were impressive, with 28 editors participating, creating two new articles, editing 167 articles, and making a total of 1.3k edits.

The initiative also focused on raising awareness and advocacy. The user group, through Sandra and Romeo was hosted on EdTech Monday Uganda, discussing how technology can drive learning among displaced youth. We also participated in the Open Source for Equality event, highlighting their work on Wikimedia and the challenges and opportunities of using open-source technologies.

These efforts resulted in increased partnerships and collaborations. The user group's advocacy work raised awareness of Wikipedia For Refugees and our efforts to bridge the digital divide in Uganda. The number of contributors increased from 18 in 2021 to 28 in 2022.

Challenges included limited digital resources and skills among the refugee community, along with infrastructure limitations and poor internet quality.

Overall, Wiki For Refugees has made significant progress in empowering refugees to contribute to Wikipedia and promoting digital inclusion. Continued support is needed to address challenges and ensure greater access and skills development for refugees.

Participation in Wiki Indaba 2022 edit

Wiki Indaba 2022 was hosted by The Wikimedia Community User Group Rwanda in Kigali, Rwanda. Four members of the Wikimedia Community User Group Uganda participated in the event, volunteering on different committees and delivering presentations.

The sessions included;

The participation of the User Group members demonstrated their active involvement in the conference and their commitment to advancing knowledge sharing in Africa.

Participation in Wikimedia Summit 2022 edit

The Wikimedia Summit 2022, organized by Wikimedia Deutschland, was held from September 9-11, 2022. It was a hybrid event, allowing for both on-site participation in Berlin and remote attendance. The Wikimedia Community User Group Uganda was represented by Geoffrey Kateregga in person at the event, while Douglas, Erina, and Alice participated online.

Geoffrey shared his insights and lessons learned from the Wikimedia Summit in a blogpost.

Annual General Meeting 2022 edit

The Annual General Meeting (AGM) of 2022 was held in person at the Emperor Hotel in Nalya, marking a return to in-person gatherings after the Covid-19 pandemic. During the AGM, members received a report on the organization's activities from the Board Directors and evaluated past initiatives. Amendments were made to the constitution to align with the organization's evolving needs. New members were accepted into the organization, while board members whose terms had expired were dissolved. Discussions were held to determine priorities for the upcoming year, setting goals and initiatives. The AGM provided an opportunity for transparency, member engagement, and strategic planning for the organization's future.

Participation in Wikimania 2022 edit

From 11th to 14th August 2022, The Wikimedia Community User Group Uganda participated in the Wikimania 2022 conference, which brought Wikimedians together to create, celebrate and connect, virtually and with in-person components. It was be four days of gathering, discussions, meetups, training, and workshops to discuss issues, report on new projects and approaches, and exchange ideas.

With Support from the Wikimedia Foundation, internet data packages and scholarships were disbursed to 30 participants which enabled them attend to the different Wikimania sessions both on YouTube and Pheedloop. We also organized an in-person meetup during Wikimania where 38 participants come together and celebrate Wikimania 2022.

User Group Strategy Process 2022 edit

In 2022, the Wikimedia Community User Group Uganda hired an external consultant to guide us through a strategic planning process. Information was gathered through interviews with volunteers, and two in-person workshops were conducted in November 2022. The process resulted in a 5-year strategic plan that outlines our organization’s mission, vision, goals, objectives, and strategies. The plan was documented and communicated to all members to ensure clarity and accountability. The aim of the process was to empower the organization, manage risks, and drive progress towards our objectives and goals over the next five years in line with the 2030 movement strategy.

A series of podcasts were recorded to document the process, you can listen to them here

Wiki4Education 2023 edit

Wiki4Education 2023 is a program in Uganda that engages educational institutions, teachers, students, and volunteers to promote the use of Wikimedia projects in education.

The program includes activities such as teacher training, sensitization, classroom activities, and community engagements. In partnership with St Emmanuel Kazo secondary school, a sensitization session was conducted, followed by a six-week training program for teachers.

Another training session involving three secondary schools is ongoing. Achievements include continued participation of engaged educators, partnerships with secondary schools, and improved program leadership. Scheduling challenges led to the decision to conduct trainings during school holidays.

Overall, Wiki4Education 2023 is making strides in incorporating Wikimedia projects into education and empowering teachers and students in Uganda.

Luganda Wikipedia 2023 edit

The Luganda Wikipedia involves editors passionate about the documentation of the Luganda language which is one of the prominent languages in Uganda. In this period the community focused on content creation and training of trainers. The community built leadership structures that helped plan and organize the community activities.  There was a focus on content creation about prominent women in Uganda in conjunction with the Wikigap program. The other content creation was around Uganda making 60 years from independence and articles about Uganda were created. This was done through campaigns to encourage editors  and reward active editors through vouchers and data provision.

A series of six training sessions were done both in person and virtual to carry out "a trainer of trainers training" with active editors to enable them become future trainers but also train within their communities .

There was also a focus on Wikidata in this period where editors were introduced and trained how to use and contribute to Wikidata. Translation of Wikidata items was carried out at an in person event and finally a campaign around article improvement for the different content creation campaigns done over the years.

We have achieved an increase in the number of articles on Luganda wikipedia and an increased number of new editors while continuing editors still stayed active in that same period.

We also improved editing and training skills of the community members and increased Volunteer engagement and recruitment.

One of the main challenges faced is limited access to computers beyond training session sand in person events which limits editing post event

WikiGap 2023 edit

WikiGap 2023 was organized by the Wikimedia Community User Group Uganda in collaboration with Wikimedia Sverige Internet Society of Uganda Chapter, and four education institutions. The event aimed to add more content about women figures, experts, and role models to Wikipedia. It took place from 8th March to 8th April 2023 and yielded several outcomes.

Four in person events were successfully held at four public institutions and universities in Uganda for the third consecutive year. Luganda User group volunteers actively participated in the competition, and a total of 126 participants took part in five events. 8 English Wikipedia articles were created, and an impressive 310 Luganda articles were translated.

The participating institutions expressed a willingness to collaborate with the User group on establishing Wikipedia centers, which had been discussed in the 2022 WikiGap event with the Swedish Institute Project and Wikimedia Sweden.

However, the collaboration with the Swedish Embassy faced challenges due to changes in the focus areas of the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Consequently, there was a lack of active participation from participants at Makerere University. Despite this, the User group worked with the available resources, utilizing the annual sAPG as a backup to ensure the activities could be carried out.

To address the need for more volunteer time and resources, User group project leads provided additional support in areas where volunteers faced limitations. Formalizing partnerships remained a challenge due to uncertainties about sustainability, but efforts were made to align these partnerships with the User group's strategy.

Overall, WikiGap 2023 in Uganda showcased the commitment and achievements of the User group and its volunteers in promoting gender equality and expanding Wikipedia's content.

Wiki Loves Africa 2023 edit

Statistics for Wiki Loves Africa 2023 in Uganda

Wiki Loves Africa is an annual contest and collaborative campaign that aims to showcase the cultural, natural, and historical heritage of the African continent through freely licensed, high-quality photographs and media on Wikimedia Commons. The Wikimedia Community User Group Uganda has actively participated in this contest since 2014, organizing events and mobilizing participants from Uganda. The theme for Wiki Loves Africa 2023 in Uganda was Climate and Weather, encouraging participants to capture images and videos depicting Uganda's climatic and atmospheric conditions, such as floods, clouds, winds, hurricanes, fogs, rainfall, and sunlight.

To kick off the contest, an in-person event was organized on March 3rd, providing participants with valuable tips on capturing captivating photos using phones or cameras, as well as writing effective captions and descriptions. Additionally, photo walks were arranged to facilitate group photo hunts on the theme.

The efforts of Wiki Loves Africa 2023 in Uganda were highly successful, with a record-breaking 1,070 photos uploaded to Wikimedia Commons, thanks to the contributions of 71 participants, including 41 new participants. However, a challenge faced by many participants was the lack of skills to take high-quality photos with their phones. To address this, a webinar organized by Wiki Africa offered participants guidance on capturing better images using their mobile devices, resulting in an improvement in the overall quality of submissions.

GLAM-Wiki 2022-2023 edit

GLAM-Wiki in Uganda focuses on building connections between traditional information institutions, open access, and the Wikimedia Movement. The initiative facilitates collaborative projects between experienced Wikimedia editors and these institutions to share resources and improve the quality and quantity of GLAM-related content on Wikimedia projects.

From June to December 2022, GLAM-Wiki Uganda organized multiple in-person and online events, engaging with legal and statutory bodies like the Personal Data Protection Office. This engagement increased awareness of the legal environment and our role in the ecosystem of open access. Volunteers showed enthusiasm for engaging with other GLAM-specific Wikimedia projects, relieving editor boredom and expanding their skills.

Increased funding allowed us to participate in international thematic campaigns like #EveryBookItsReader and #1Lib1Ref. We also supported participants in Africa-wide campaigns, such as the African Librarians Week (#AfLibWk). In this year's edition, Uganda had the second-highest number of active contributors and multiple editors in the top 10. Non-editing members serving in influential positions secured access to valuable resources and premises, demonstrating growing acceptance of the Wikimedia Community in Uganda.

Challenges include limited understanding of the connection between GLAM, Open Access, and Wikimedia among volunteers and potential collaborators. To address this, we restructured our approach, arranging physical visits to institutions to learn more about their processes and incorporate open access principles.

We introduced a GLAM microgrant to foster diverse GLAM-related ideas and mentor applicants through the execution process. Venue rental costs were mitigated by organizing events in two parts: virtual launches and trainings followed by in-person events. Some partners and institutions provided venues for thematic engagement, such as the Uganda Society Library and the African Studies Bookstore.

Despite challenges, GLAM-Wiki Uganda has made significant progress in expanding partnerships, increasing participation, and enhancing understanding of the Wikimedia Movement's value within the GLAM sector in Uganda.

June -December 2022

January - May 2023

Since July 2022 present we have been able to hold at least 5 in-person events and others online. These events collectively have yielded  the following so far

New articles on Wikipedia 05
New items on Wikidata 141
Uploads on Wikimedia Commons 50
Archival texts added to WikiSource 02
Validations under Wikisource 2569
New editors 10

Wiki For Human Rights 2023 edit

WikiForHumanRights 2023 in Uganda focused on creating content related to human rights activists, environmental health, national protected areas, and communities impacted by environmental issues. The global writing contest took place from April 22 to June 16, 2023, and focused on improving articles on Wikipedia related to human rights and the triple planetary crisis.

The outcomes of the edit-a-thon were significant. A total of 46 contributors participated, resulting in the creation of 59 new English Wikipedia articles, translation of 45 articles into English and Luganda, creation of 221 Wikidata items, and uploading of 93 photos on Wikimedia Commons.

Participants learned about the protected areas of Uganda, climate change, environmental health as a human rights issue, and human rights activists and organizations in Uganda. The edit-a-thon attracted four new editors, with two emerging as winners and one having an article approved on Wikipedia for the competition.

The event also introduced participants to new Wikimedia projects like Wiktionary, with a focus on incorporating them into future edit-a-thons. Contributions to Wikipedia for Human Rights saw significant growth across all Wikimedia projects, including Wikidata, English and Luganda Wikipedia.

A strong committee was developed to provide mentorship and guidance to contributors, leading to the creation of a "Best Mentor" category to recognize and motivate volunteers who supported fellow editors. The use of social media platforms and participation in podcast interviews helped promote the event and share the experiences of the winners.

Challenges faced during the edit-a-thon included the complex nature of the human rights and healthy environment theme, which required ongoing learning sessions to enhance understanding. Delays in article reviews by administrators affected editor motivation, and limited digital resources and skills hindered effective navigation and contribution to the platforms.

Despite these challenges, WikiForHumanRights 2023 in Uganda achieved its goal of creating valuable content related to human rights and environmental issues, fostering learning and collaboration among participants, and increasing awareness of Wikimedia projects and initiatives.


The Wikimedia Community User Group in Uganda participated in the Wiki Loves Earth international photographic competition for the fifth time. The competition aimed to promote natural heritage sites in Uganda through Wikimedia projects. From May 15 to July 15, 2023, participants captured and shared photographs of these sites under a free license.

The competition resulted in improved photo descriptions, thanks to enhanced teamwork during group photo hunts in Kidepo Valley National Park. Challenges included limited budget resources to cover all natural heritage sites and the need for cross-regional training on photographic competitions.

Despite the challenges, the participation of the user group showcased Uganda's natural beauty and raised awareness about its diverse heritage sites. The competition allowed individuals to share their photography skills, contribute to Wikimedia projects, and promote accessibility to these resources.

Link to submitted photos

Digital Rights and Inclusion Forum 2023 edit

From April 11-14, Wikimedia Community User Group Uganda participated in the the Digital Rights and Inclusion Forum (DRIF) 2023 under the theme, "Building A Sustainable Internet for All" in Nairobi Kenya. DRIF is an annual important platform organised by Paradigm Initiative where conversations on digital policy in Africa are shaped, policy directions debated and partnerships forged for action.

Sessions included:

Key take aways from DRIF can be found on DIFF post:

Wikimedians at the Digital Rights and Inclusion Forum 2023 (DRIF23)