Update: Voting has now closed! Asante sana! Thank you! to everyone who voted for Kabissa. We were honored by the outpouring of support on Netsquared. Please be sure to keep in touch with Kabissa so you can be a part of our effort to continue to grow and support people and organizations seeking to connect for Africa.  

Between October 11-15, community voting is open on Netsquared.org for projects participating in the FACT Social Justice Challenge. Kabissa has thrown its hat into the ring with a powerful idea to build the Kabissa platform and we have a very good chance at success - but we need your help!

1) Here's what you need to do

  1. Vote for between 3-5 projects on Netsquared.org including Kabissa Connections (see the 5 African projects Kabissa recommends you vote for below)
  2. Add Kabissa to your favorites on Netsquared and add a comment to show your support
  3. Forward the link to the Kabissa project through Facebook and your social networks

If this is how your ballot looks, you're done! Thank you for voting for Kabissa! We recommend that you first go to http://www.netsquared.org and log in, then return here and click on each of these five links to record your vote. If it looks like the screenshot on the right then you're done! 

Thank you very much! Asante sana! 

Kabissa Connections
http://netsquared.org/projects/kabissa-connections

Agricultural Marketing Information Services - Cameroon
http://netsquared.org/projects/agricultural-marketing-information-servi

Violent Water Conflicts In Kenya’s Ewaso Ngiro River Basin: Fighting Back With Fair Water Sharing, Metering, Water Conservation And A Win-Win Electronic Peace Building Formula
http://netsquared.org/projects/violent-water-conflicts-kenya-s-ewaso-ng

Focal Point Global
http://netsquared.org/projects/focal-point-global

Using mobile technologies to reduce maternal death
http://netsquared.org/projects/safe-motherhood-project-senegal

2) Why it's important for you to vote

If we are among the 5 winners, we will receive a cash award of $5,000 and recognition on the NetSquared and FACT web sites. In addition to direct financial support through the FACT Social Justice Award, FACT is generously supporting fund development assistance for all FACT Featured Projects. This assistance will connect us with fundraising experts and guidance to help us move towards increased investments and greater community impact.

3) How will our project benefit Kabissa members in Africa?

In a nutshell, Kabissa Connections will address trust concerns by providing a platform revealing the connections that organizations have with networks, international organizations, supporters and service providers. We will do this for organizations working in Africa while collaborating with others on open source tools, standards and approaches that can be replicated in other regions.

Comments

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Thanks for all the support, everyone! I am really appreciating the discussion in the comments and the many tweets in support of the Kabissa Connections Project on Netsquared.

Please continue spreading the word about the Netsquared challenge and ask your friends and colleagues to vote for us - we need as many votes as we can get so that we can win this challenge and move forward on delivering the benefits to our members in Africa!

Check back and join the discussion to give your feedback or contribute your ideas about how you will use Kabissa Connections in support of your work in Africa. 

We are also falling behind in "fans" - after voting please add Kabissa to your favorites by ticking the star on listings or "add to my favorites" at the bottom of the post (but above the comments). 

Warm regards, 

Tobias

ps - we hear people are having some trouble voting - the interface is a little clunky, I am sorry about that. But if you follow the voting directions in this post on Kabissa you should have no problem:

We recommend that you first go to http://www.netsquared.org and log in, then return here and click on each of these three links to record your vote. Let us now if you have any questions about the voting process. 

Please let me know how you get on and if you have any suggestions or questions. Thanks for voting! 

I wanted to give a quick update on the netsquared.org voting, and thank everyone who has already voted for Kabissa. We have only until Friday to get into the top 15 projects that will be reviewed by a jury, so if you have not yet voted please do so now! You can help Kabissa win $5,000 and additional support and guidance on the development of our online platform to connect people and organizations for Africa. 

Unfortunately there is no leaderboard and ballots are secret, so it's not possible to see how exactly we are doing in the competition. Nevertheless, we are getting many supportive and helpful comments and 16 people have added us to their favorites projects on Netsquared, which is gratifying and also shows us near the top on project lists when people sort by number of fans or comments.

When you vote, please add our project to your favorites and a comment to give your ideas for how you will use the new platform or simply to add your voice so others can see how important this project is.  

If you have any suggestions or questions, please feel free to simply reply to this email - or add them to the Netsquared.org project page! 

Warm regards, 

Tobias

Today's the final day of community voting in the Netsquared FACT Social Justice Challenge. If you have not yet had a chance to cast your ballot for Kabissa, can you please do so right away? 

Yesterday, I posted an update on Kabissa Connections in the challenge to the Netsquared blog which I wanted to share with you all here. 

Update On Kabissa Connections - Honored By Outpouring Of Support And Appeal For Your Vote In FACT Social Justice Challenge

I have been following the FACT Social Justice Challenge and have been honored by the outpouring of support for the KABISSA CONNECTIONS project in the comments (see below) and number of fans. It appears the other African projects we support are also doing well which I find tremendously gratifying.

If you have not yet decided on all 5 projects you want to vote for and share our vision for empowering African organizations at the grassroots, please consider adding KABISSA CONNECTIONS to your ballot. Our project will help build their repuation online by revealing the many positive relationships they have with each other and with international organizations, foundations and online networks.  

Since there is no open leaderboard, please also tick the star or "add to my bookmarks" link on the Kabissa project page to help us see how we are doing. Add a comment too if you have suggestions or ideas for how you might use the platform. 

A selection of comments follows. 

From WiserEarth

Camilla: WE wholeheartedly support the Kabissa project. The WiserEarth team is already excited to be partnering already with Kabissa on the recent survey into how West African NGOs are using online collaboration and communication tools. We look forward to investigating other ways that our respective platforms can help NGOs in Africa through the sharing information and content. For example, through enabling the Kabissa platform to incorporate WiserEarth's API.

Bowo: Kabissa is doing important work in Africa. It's amazing how they've come this far on volunteer power!... I hope they will win this challenge, as how they are going to put the prize to good use is even more exciting (my comment after >>):

- Build reputation and trust of African Organizations, thereby opening doors for them to new opportunities for partnership and funding >> Definitely needed as I've came across several organizations from Africa asking for donation but does not have enough credential to inspire trust.- Empower grassroots organizations in Africa to take control over their own Internet presence and strategy >> need no explanation. It's simply a must!- Contribute to new open source software and standards for improved information sharing that serves grassroots organizations>> yes. Sometimes it surprises me still how important information ended up in silos due to technological or licensing constraints. Let's help Kabissa open up things on this front.

From Kabissa Volunteers

 Hannah: Tobias -- as a newcomer to Kabissa I must express my sincere thanks to you for envisioning such an innovative framework to bring together organizations across Africa and the west in one virtual place. I am well-acquainted with change agents and leaders in Kenya who have expressed a desire to connect with other organizations engaged in similar causes, but weren't aware of the resources at their disposal to be able to do this. I have been telling them about Kabissa, and as a result their universes have literally exploded tenfold.  

Speaking on behalf of the Ndoto Project, I am looking forward to opening many doors in terms of our own objectives as well as connecting with others to create opportunities for the sharing of intellectual capital. In the spirit of "harambe," together we're always stronger. Thanks for making all this possible. 

Ghislain: Very Exciting to see Kabissa taking part in this challenge for the opportunity to grow more and increase its footprint as a dedicated non-profit for grassroots in Africa!

As the Kabissa's membership manager, I am privileged to read about new NGOs working in Africa that are interested in joining Kabissa. It's truly remarkable to see so many small and medium African NGOs working tirelessly to have a positive impact in their community, on their country or on the African continent as a whole! Those NGOs are not waiting for governments or big budgets/investments to shake things in their respective areas, but they all have a strong belief and burning desire to CONTRIBUTE their 2 cents and make things happen one way or the other, despites the multiple obstacles they certainly encounter.

Well, that's where Kabissa comes into the picture: We are one of the largest online platform/community used today by 1500+ NGOs as their forum of reference to raise awareness about their cause, share their experiences, or just to have some presence on the global village! Advocacy, Capacity building, economic development, environment, technology, education, microfinance, health, humanitarian services, culture, governance are few domains of expertise of  NGOs featured on Kabissa. I couldn't be more delighted to be part of such a wonderful organization!

From esteemed Challenge Competitors in Africa: 

Focal Point Global
Thanks for your support! We have include your project in our blog as a project for which to vote. Good Luck!

Testimonies of History / ICT To Fight Cholera in Cameroon
Hi Toby, Its just a coincidence since I was about to vote for your project. My NGO is part of that inititiative (Kabissa)! We are already feeling the impact locally.

Violent Water Conflicts In Kenya’s Ewaso Ngiro River Basin: Fighting Back With Fair Water Sharing, Metering, Water Conservation And A Win-Win Electronic Peace Building Formula
Firstly, I wish to acknowledge how Kabissa, in its' name, has identified with Africa.

Secondly, I wish to say that this is a great idea to implement especially in Africa. Through Kabissa like minded organisations can now link with each other and share innovative ideas on how to counter and prevent the myriad challenges that face us.

We in Seanet therefore whole heartedly support Kabissa and also feel privileged to be able to join this African-oriented development initiative.

Thanks.

Agricultural Marketing Information Services - Cameroon 
Tobias, through the Kabissa platform you are directly addressing the MAJOR problem that funders and donors have with most Organisations created and based in Africa. The Kabissa initiative is cool and worth every effort you and your team are putting into it.

The only  organization in Europe that I know to be addressing  addressing similar issues of trust and hoping to expand its reach from their Malmo office in Sweden is the Global Trust Centre.

I am confident that creating Kabissa and targeting it to deal with trust issues in Africa shall contribute to resolve many problems and save funders the ache of finding out albeit too late that they have been funding ghost or inexistent projects. I think it is time to let the many organizations that crop up  know that their stealth game is over.

Kabissa is going to be a booster for AMIS-CAMEROON as well because once we register with Kabissa we can be searched and located.

From Georg Neumann

 Tobias, I really like Kabissa Connections. It addressed two main concerns: 

Transparency: With more and more groups being created and working on the ground, making the basic organisational information from annual reports, board members to whom they work with more and more relevant. As you say, the question of trust becomes fundamental for reaching out to donors around the world. 

Memberships/Connections with the organisation: Second, this feature can allow to build up and manage the memberships of the organization (with CiviCRM you are already using a powerful tool) on the one hand, but also, related to the first point, increasingly managing external stakeholders. Kabissa Connection, including listserves, blogging functionalities and RSS feeds, can really become the communication centre point around which organisations can engage in new media communication through reliable platform without falling back to controversial tools such as Facebook. I very much like the idea of integrating listserves (this project is very successful in using them: http://forums.e-democracy.org/).

Maybe for the next iteration: Many of these organisations lack a proper internal network or intranet that could be used to store files, and share discussions. This may be an additional driver to use the platform. On the other hand, sometimes the leaner and more specific the solution, the better. 

Hope this helps!

It sure does! If you read this far, please go now to vote for Kabissa Connections. Thanks! 

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