With the non-profit Wiki In Africa, we are organizing the 3rd edition of the WikiChallenge competition in 9 French-speaking African countries. Initially slated to run until June 2020, the competition will be extended until April 2021 due to the pandemic.
A competition to encourage the digital education of African school children
The competition is aimed at pupils aged 9 to 13 years attending our Digital Schools: Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea, Madagascar, Mali, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Tunisia. These school children who do not have textbooks or the Internet, have been connected to offline educational content (Khan Academy, Wikipedia, Nomad Education, Vikidia, etc.) with the Raspberry-Pi tablets and servers that we provide to primary classes in more than 1,000 establishments.
For this 3rd edition, more than 100 of these establishments in total are taking part in this writing competition. The children at Digital Schools can now learn how to post a little about their daily lives on Vikidia. It will enable the school pupils to discover digital technology, and to make progress in writing while sharing their local culture with the rest of the world.
An international writing competition that highlights the wealth of African culture on the web
The writing theme is open but we have suggested to the schools that they create articles about themes that are dear to their community: their town, village, place of interest (mountain, river, national park, etc.), nearby museum or local curiosity. Pupils should use an encyclopedic writing style. A way of strengthening the presence of African culture and everyday life.
With the software developed especially for this competition and the help of their teachers, the school pupils highlight their community, their everyday life, their environment and their culture. The pupils and teachers are supported and trained by Orange Foundation educational mediators, as well as volunteer wikimedians and vikidians.
Vikidia is an encyclopedia for 8- to 13-year-olds. It works in the same way as Wikipedia with the particular feature that it invites children and teenagers to contribute with the adult participants. It has more than 27,000 articles in French in open source.
To find out more, read the presentation brochure.
Rewards for schools
At the end of the competition, the panel will appoint two winning schools in each country (local winners) which will respectively receive €1,000 and €2,000 of school supplies, including satchels, notebooks and computers among other things. The jury will then select 3 overall (international) winners which will receive €5,000 of school supplies each. The prizes will be awarded at a ceremony organized as of the return to school in 2021 in each of the 8 participating countries. In 2019, the second edition of the competition allowed pupils from 65 schools in Mali, Cameroon, Niger, Senegal, Guinea, Tunisia and Madagascar to share their culture on Vikidia.
1000 Digital Schools
We support 1,000 Digital Schools that teach more than 500,000 children in 15 African countries in 2021. The program is one of the flagship activities of the Foundation in terms of digital inclusion. The Foundation uses digital technology to encourage equal opportunities for access to knowledge, thus enabling better societal integration for each of the children involved in the program.