YES Programs




A Zoom screenshot of the Arabic Wikipedia website homepage

In six hours of learning and collaboration, eleven YES alumni from the West Bank became editors on the international free encyclopedia, Wikipedia. From February 15-17, the alumni learned how to highlight Palestinian history and culture through Wikipedia.

Batoul Qaisseieh, a Palestinian freelance writer and member of the Arabic Language Wikipedia Society, facilitated the workshop. On the first day, the alumni joined the Wikipedia community and were trained on becoming effective editors. Over the next two days, the alumni discussed topics and crafted content focused on Palestinian culture and community.

Yasmin Khamis ‘12 said, "The Wikipedia training not only filled a gap in my knowledge, but also satisfied a curiosity about how Wikipedia works. This training was essential for raising awareness on social issues in our community that YES alumni already work on."

The event coincided with the West Bank alumni’s participation in the Palestine-Malaysia Exchange Activity, an exchange activity between WikiPalestine and the Wikimedia Community User Group Malaysia. This initiative, which took place from February 15-29, aimed to foster cultural exchange between the Arabic and Malay-language Wikipedia communities, and involved the translation of 80 articles between the two languages, with a focus on sharing Malaysian and Palestinian history and culture.

The alumni were proud to contribute to the documentation of their history and culture on Wikipedia. The WikiPalestine project was born out of the desire to share Palestinian heritage with the world. Through their dedication and collaboration, the alumni not only enriched Wikipedia’s content, but also promoted cross-cultural understanding and appreciation.

Noor Almaslamani ‘16 said, "The WikiPalestine workshop offered insights that were previously unknown to me. Before participating, I wasn't informed about the lack of Palestinian representation on Wikipedia and its significance. Additionally, Batoul displayed remarkable patience in addressing our questions and leading us through each workshop step."

Yasmin Khamis (YES 2011-2012, West Bank, placed by IRIS in Boone, IA)

Noor Almaslamani (YES 2015-2016, West Bank, placed by AFS-USA in Marietta, OH)