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Dadamac goes Glocal!

Dadamac Day 2010 marked our sixth anniversary celebration and took as its theme the issue of global involvement in local initiatives.

It was an exciting event for us, held “virtually” at Dadamac’s physical home in Nigeria, the Knowledge Resource Centre. The seventeen participants included guests from the wider Dadamac community. Local attendees ranged from Programme Directors to trainers and students from Fantsuam (who were inside the KRC, sharing computers). Other contributors came from Ireland, the UK, Benin and Lagos. A webcam linkup between Nigeria and the UK proved an enjoyable way to mark the end of our celebrations.  

Every Dadamac Day is different.

Way back in 2005 we were simply celebrating the fact that we could get online in real time! That year’s event marked the year following Pam’s visit to Nigeria, when she presented the first Teacher Talking course. It was fantastic on the subsequent Dadamac Days to connect with some of the same teachers who were by then in various locations. Some returned to FF in order to get online. It was appropriate that the first course Pam taught in the newly-built KRC was for “Self-Directed Learners” in 2008 since this year’s Dadamac Day saw the KRC celebrating its potential future as a truly glocal information centre.

Last year the UK held a live Skype conference at Barcamp Africa, where a audio link-up allowed us to hear a local Nigerian choir sing. No one knows yet how we will mark next year’s anniversary . . . but I can tell you one thing. I am confident it will be suitably celebrated!

Incidentally, this year also saw a break with tradition as we departed from our usual practice of celebrating on a Saturday in favour of a weekday instead. This ties in with a changing of emphasis on First Thursdays -  something Pam will explain on her Posterous at a later date. Arranging a time to suit most people presented considerable challenges, of course, but we finally settled on our usual “First Thursdays” date and our usual Wednesday UK-Nigeria team meeting time.

As you will appreciate, the typed transcript cannot possibly capture the buzz, excitement and dynamism of the meeting - but below are just a few of the comments about Dadamac Day 2010.

From our local experts in Nigeria:

Chollom: “ I personally get amazed at how much I have learnt in 1 year and about 3 months”

Mishael: " This has been a privilege for me to meet people I could never dream of meeting thanks”

Doris:  "It’s my first time to attend an eConference, and meet people across the globe while sitting here in Fantsuam. I also now see Fantsuam in a new light"

John: “It is amazing how quickly six years have passed by, but we do have a lot to show for those years! At six, I think we have made some progress, do you agree”?

John: ”The KRC is our power house as a repository and for dissemination of information”

Comfort: It has been  a milestone for FF with the contacts and network

Stanley : “Fantsuam Foundation very good when you come [to] Fantsuam you learn”.
Florence : “Yes, Stanley FF is very good I learnt most  of my work skill in Fantsuam and it has paid off well for me”.( Florence was originally at FF and is currently working in the National Open University of Nigeria as an Auditor and joined in the celebrations from Lagos.)

John (or possible a student sharing his computer) "This anniversary has given me opportunity to learn from other people"

Kelechi: “I'm pleased we are able to share resources at this level”.

Plus a few comments from our global participants:

Jen: “ The group's continued strength is very impressive... I'm proud to be involved with such a fantastic group of people and projects”

Pam: “It has been a wonderful event”

Elaine: “I don't know of any groups with such a high level of direct contact”

Frances: “Yes in a 'small' place there is a lot of concentrated knowledge and innovative ideas - on the cutting edge”

Plus two of the Good wishes messages from friends who were unable to attend;
Dick Heller: Emeritus Professor, Universities of Manchester, UK, and Newcastle, Australia. Coordinator Peoples-uni said "best wishes to the Team at Fantsuam and thanks for the help and support over the years”.

Michael Maranda - Co-Founder, Chicago Digital Access Alliance

I am writing to offer warm greetings from Chicago as you celebrate Dadamac Day this November 4, 2010.

We've embarked upon a new era of cooperation and collaboration for the species - the era of Open Stewardship rises before us, inviting us to our highest potential.

As we connect the dots between projects and people, we see the space between as something only newly visible and connective.  

None of us stand alone - but we must still invite each other to the higher work, and offer a path to those willing to lend a hand or share their experience.  

All our projects must re-orient themselves to an open way of working.  Don't mistake my meaning:  This does not mean unstructured work or formless invitation.

We must prepare our endeavors in a new way,  seeking and receiving appropriate energies from all corners of the globe, participating in the global commons as peers.

This means that henceforth we communicate our work in terms of the fields of which it is a part, and we share maps of where we're going and what we yet may need to get there.  

I am one of many assembling with the Coalition of the Willing, and this is our chief task -- opening our work to you as you open yours to us - for we are one.

We are stronger together, and we need this strength more than ever.

With tremendous respect for the work you do to make this a better world, let us grow in wisdom together.

In Joy and Peace “

I think that it is fitting that I should leave the final summing up of Dadamac Day 2010 to our two Directors namely John who commented “ to be able to share all these local efforts with a global audience through DadaMac, that is what GLOCAL is all about. .. Knowing that our efforts and experience in a remote corner of  Nigeria can be shared with a global audience is.......... awesome, yes, that’s the word!”

and Pam who said “ Wow - what a wonderful meeting.”

(The contents of the meeting to be added here shortly).