Group Photograph of participants in the first meeting (Berlin, 2015); Photograph was taken by Wikimedia Deutschland.

It was in Berlin, Wikimedia Conference, 2015. Representatives of Wikimedia Bangladesh (Nahid Sultan & Ali Haidar Khan), India (Yohann Varun Thomas & Ravishankar Ayyakkannu) and Nepal (Ganesh Paudel & Saroj Dhakal) chapters decided to create a regional collaboration platform where communities of South Asia can help each others pooling resources, hosting events and promoting Wikimedia projects. Nahid Sultan proposed the name of this new entity ‘Wikimedia SAARC’.

It was felt that these regions have common history and tradition along with issues and problems, which can be addressed easily from this platform.  The name SAARC comes from an already exist regional intergovernmental organization and geopolitical union in South Asia. After the creation of Wikimedia SAARC back in 2015, we’ve organized a number of meet-ups during various international & regional Wikipedia conference. In 2016, Wikimedia usergroup from Pakistan and Sri Lanka have also joined us.

If your country/language community is a part of SAARC region and is going to set up a chapter, hosting events and other activities, our existing SAARC chapters and communities would like to give you a hand. Join the mailing list and get into contact with the existing communities in South Asia, we’ll be happy to share our experience and offer the necessary expertise.

Our objectives

# To create awareness among the people of South Asia about the availability of free and open educational content and enable them to effectively use this.
# To help build the capacity of individuals and institutions to access, develop and contribute to free and open educational resources which include but are not limited to, encyclopedias, dictionaries, books, images etc.
# To organize workshops, seminars, study circles, conferences, training programs and other educational activities in collaboration and co-operation with other Wikimedia chapters/communities, academic/educational institutes, research groups, non-government organizations, foreign agencies, governments and any other interested organization for spreading the knowledge and/or use of free and open educational resources.
# To support the charitable work of the Wikimedia Foundation.
# To promote wider participation in the creation, dissemination and expansion of information and educational resources covering the world’s knowledge and languages to all persons, everywhere.
# To further the development of electronic, printed and other resources required to support such participation.
# To produce, publish and develop or cause to be produced, published and developed, information/educational resources, whether in printed, electronic or other forms.
# To encourage the use of information resources for the advancement of education.
# To do all and any other acts or things as may be incidental or conducive to the attainment of all or any of the above objects.