Many thanks to everyone involved in organising BarCampAfrica.
- Ethel - thanks for launching the idea that Dadamac Day should be a BarCampAfrica UK Fringe event, and for lending us your laptop to help more people join in the online discussions.
- Richard - Thank you for helping us with pre-planning, and for great support on the day.
- Conrad and Julius - Thank you for all your support the day.
It was a great experience for us to be included as a fringe event. I have blogged about it here.
At the end of BarCampAfrica UK 2009 you were starting to look forward to a follow-up event in 2010 and asking people what commitment they could make to that event, and to preparing for it.
This is what Nikki and I have been thinking ref commitment from Dadamac. The most valuable resources we can offer to you are our rural Africa connections: our well developed communication channels, and, even more importantly, the people we communicate with through those channels and the knowledge that they have.
We would like to explore with you the best way to make those resources available for BarCampAfrica next year. We believe from the feedback we got that the online link was worth doing. We would build on the experience of Dadamac Day as a fringe event, but would not necessarily replicate it (Dadamac Day can be held on any Saturday in November).
Issues to consider
It was wonderful to see our friends in Nigeria connecting directly with our new contacts at BarCampAfrica. However, as the people in the middle, it was a challenge for Nikki and me to give good attention in both directions, and we need feedback from both sides aout this. There were people in Nigeria who had made a great effort to attend, and deserved extra appreciation. Equally there were some people at BarCampAfrica who came to see what was going on when we were hard pressed to give them good attention. We would like to review this with you.
We wonder if next time we should focus more on the opportunity for serious introductions and discussion (which started to happen after the main celebrations) rather than the celebrations themselves.
Benefits of connecting
Normally it is hard for people in Nigeria to come online on a Saturday, for a formal meeting, as there are so many social events happening in the local community. Fortunately Dadamac Day is a special occasion and people do gather at Fantsuam specially to join us online. It was a coincidence that Dadamac Day and BarCampAfrica fell on the same day this year - a happy coincidence. Thanks to that coincidence members of our core team in Nigeria have experienced the benefits of coming online on a Saturday to make contacts with BarCampAfrica people.
Looking way ahead - we loved the barcamp T-Shirts you were wearing. It would have made for great photos if some of our team in Nigeria had been wearing them too. I imagine they have all gone now, but perhaps you will have more next year, and we could plan ahead.
Arranging a link-up for next year
If you would be interested in another online link to rural Africa next year, then we would be very happy to arrange one. We would engage members of the core team in Nigeria well in advance through our weekly meetings, so that, based on the positive experience this year we would find people willing to come online on a Saturday specially to be at BarCampAfrica.
Once again, thanks for organising a great event, and we look forward to the next BarCampAfrica.
(This will also be sent as a direct email to the people concerned)