Volunteering in the Language Space

Volunteering in the Language Space

Audiopedia would be nothing without its volunteers. We would like to introduce you to some of them with our "Volunteer Stories". This one is about Lucy from Nigeria. As an indigenous language activist she has actively participated in series of projects and campaigns that promote and create visibility for African-related contents, enhanced African-related articles, created Wikidata items and promoted visibility for African Scholars on the online encyclopedia.

The past before the beginning

In the final lap of my study at the University, the reality of life at school set in - I became worried about the future. What and how can I strive in an ever-evolving and highly competitive world of independence? Then came the answer - being open-minded about new knowledge and this ushered me into the world of indigenous language advocacy.

The beginning

In August 2021, I had the incredible opportunity to participate in the Audiopedia Translatathon and editathon project at the University of Nigeria. It was my first experience of such an event and I must say, it was truly eye-opening and inspiring.

Thanks to the GIZ sponsorship, this project was organized by REDAID NIGERIA in partnership with Audiopedia (URIDU), a non-profit organization dedicated to making essential knowledge available to everyone, everywhere, and most especially women in the rural community. Their mission is to provide free, reliable, and up-to-date information on health, education, and women's rights to people in low-resource settings through audio content in local languages.

As a student at the University of Nigeria, I was thrilled to be a part of this event. The Translatathon seemed like a perfect opportunity for me to actualize my passion of being an agent of change and impact on others while at the same time pursuing an open-minded goal of trying something new. I was particularly excited about the idea of translating important information into local languages, ensuring that it reaches those who need it most.

The event itself was a 3 days-long affair, filled with energy and enthusiasm. With a team of passionate youthful individuals, we had access to a library of written health content in English, which we then translated into the Igbo language for the benefit of women who are living in the rural communities of the 5 Igbo-speaking states in Nigeria. It was a challenging yet rewarding task, as I had to ensure that the translations were not only accurate but also culturally relevant and easily understandable to the local communities.

Throughout these 3 days, I was constantly amazed by the dedication and passion of my fellow volunteers. There was a real sense of purpose in the air, as we all worked towards a common goal of making vital information accessible to those who need it the most. It was truly a collaborative effort, with everyone sharing their knowledge and skills to create high-quality translations.

At the end of the day, I felt a great sense of accomplishment. Knowing that I was a part of the team whose translations would soon be available to millions of people in Nigeria filled me with a deep sense of pride. It was a humbling experience, and it made me realize just how powerful language can be in breaking down barriers and improving access to information.

The present

Participating in the Audiopedia Translatathon was a truly unforgettable experience. It opened my eyes to the importance of making information available in local languages, and it reinforced my belief in the power of education to bring about positive change. This project ushered me into the threshold of indigenous language advocacy which has become a source of impacting positively on others and enriching the contents of my indigenous language. I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity and I cannot wait to continue to contribute to such impactful initiatives in the future.

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