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May 23, 2019

Wikimedians of Albanian Language are helping Wikipedia grow

Wikimedians of Albanian Language User Group - WoALUG is a Wikimedia Foundation affiliate, actively contributing to distribution, improvement, and development of content in Wikipedia Shqip, and other wiki projects.

Founded in 2014, WoALUG aims to support the Albanian community of Wikipedia and other wiki projects by creating collaborations, organizing activities and supporting projects that promote the freedom of information and culture of Wikipedias. Their activities cover Albania, Kosovo and the Albanian speaking part of Macedonia.

In 2018, with the help of IPKO Foundation and Wikimedia Foundation, WoALUG created partnerships, organized numerous activities and promoted Wikipedia increasing the quality and quantity of content in Wikimedia projects. During the July - December 2018 funded period, they organized workshops, edit-a-thons, online & offline competitions, fostered collaboration with educational and GLAM institutions, and promoted Wikipedia’s mission.

([Workshop during Vau i Dejes - Margott] - [CC BY-SA 4.0])

With education as one of their program’s pillars, they aim to foster relationships with educational institutions and their educators. To kick off the program, they managed to integrate Wikipedia as an extra credit assignment for two universities classes: Art & Design class at UBT university and Professional Development of Teachers class at the University of Prishtina, Faculty of Education. In Albania, they have been working with high schools in the region of Berat, in partnership with Peace Corps Albania, through which we held 10 workshops and 2 editathons.

[National Library of Kosovo - Arben Llapashtica] - [CC BY-SA 4.0]

[1st place at Wiki Loves Monuments 2018 in Kosovo]

Starting out the grant, they also worked intensely in reaching out to GLAM (Galleries, Libraries, Archives & Museums) institutions with the aim to inform them about the benefits Wikimedia projects brings to them. During this period they were able to set relationships with 3 institutions, 2 of which are in the process of signing a memorandum of understanding.

Paralely, they outreach to the public, hosting several activities involving Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons, and Wikidata. In cooperation with UP Summer School, WoALUG held a photo competition, while in September 2018, they participated in the Wiki Loves Monuments -the biggest photography contest in the world- resulting in 735 monuments photos from Albania and Kosovo being uploaded in Wikimedia Commons. 1,024 photos of cities in Kosovo & Albania were uploaded in Wikimedia Commons as a result of 2 photowalks they organized. During the 6 months period, they hosted 10 editathons, involving 130 students who produced 54 new articles in Wikipedia and 302 new entries in Wikidata.

Their work is continuing in 2019 with the extended support by Wikimedia Foundation & IPKO Foundation. For more on their work, you can visit . To check the full report for 2018 click here.