Local Communities

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What is an Open Food Facts local community team?[1]

A Local Community team is a group of people that share an interest in Open Food Facts. A team can be as simple as a few people that get together occasionally to talk about Open Food Facts or as formal as a national team with a governance structure in place. There are many flavours and styles for teams and no single formula applies to every region or culture in the world.

Finding a team

Open Food Facts is a global project and teams are potentially everywhere! And, if you live in a major metropolitan area chances are there’s one near you. On this page, you can find a team near you. You can also check out upcoming events that teams are participating in, or find information about team events and meetings.

Once you find a team near you, we strongly encourage you to join it! Teams are a great way to learn more about Open Food Facts and, if you are so inclined, to participate in the creation of Open Food Facts and to help make it better.

One of the the best ideas is to join your LoCo team and join its Slack channel. Make sure that you introduce yourself and explain what skills you have.

If you are traveling and want to meet up with other people that enjoy Open Food Facts, you can use the LoCo list.

Starting a team

No team near you? That’s an opportunity! You have the ability to start one yourself. Open Food Facts enthusiasts sometimes need someone to help them find each other. Be that person. It starts with one connector. If you’re not comfortable connecting people together, perhaps enlist the help of your most sociable friend. They may be up for an interesting challenge.

Here are four really easy steps to help get you (or your friend) started:

  • Find a place to gather. Start small. If you have a local coffee shop or community gathering place in your neighbourhood, that’s a great venue for your first Open Food Facts get-together. Ask the owner. You can likely host a lot of initial meetings in informal settings like this. Make it an easy spot to get to for you and your neighbours. Really make it easy, otherwise you’ll be burning energy just to get to meetings. 1. Send word out in your neighbourhood. It’s easy.
  • Make a flyer that says: “Hey fellow food enthusiasts! We gather at here on the first Monday of every month at 7pm to help spread Open Food Facts. Hope you’ll join us!” Keep it friendly, human, and clear. This type of notice can be put on local public bulletin boards, in libraries, on a pole on (pedestrian) busy intersections, bus stops, etc. (Make sure it’s allowed though. Find friendly places to post things.) Want to get more fancy with your flyers? Check out the pre-designed samples at http://en.wiki.openfoodfacts.org/Presentation_Kit.
  • You can also sometimes get free listings on community web sites, local newspapers, and local entertainment magazines. Your initial goal is to attract people that are looking for this kind of stuff, so don’t worry if you don’t have a massive ad campaign. Some people will find you. The people that find you first are sometimes the ones that have the most interest.
  • Meet and have fun! This part is the easiest. Try to keep it simple and light. Don’t focus on “ToDo’s”, formality, and structure. Very few people like joining an organization that looks like a government. Over time as you attract more people to your team (because it’s fun), projects and activities will naturally emerge.
  • Register your team here.

Things you can do as a team

There are no limits to the things you can do and the fun you can have as a team. Here are some examples we’ve seen that have worked:

  • Socialize! Get together over a cup of tea or coffee and talk about Open Food Facts.
  • Teach! Create presentations that help your community understand what Open Food Facts is and how to get involved too.
  • Hit the streets! Join a community event and spread the word about Open Food Facts.
  • Make something! Maybe there’s something you’d like to see in Open Food Facts. Find some programmer friends and make it.
  • Write and Translate! Open Food Facts always needs good guides and documentation in your language.
  • Help! Provide assistance to those that are stuck. Install Open Food Facts on their phone and help get them started.
  • Party! Celebrate Open Food Facts with your community. Have fun!
  • Compare! What are other teams doing? Check out this page, ask on Slack and see!

Getting help for your team

You are not alone. Chances are another team in the world can help you out with useful tips, tricks, and advice to make your own team awesome. One way to reach out to others this page and contact a team lead near you. Alternatively, you can reach out to other teams on Slack. Finally, Slack is the place where volunteer Open Food Facts experts and enthusiasts will happily and helpfully answer your questions about teams.

If you already have a team and need assistance, help or guidance anyone can reach out and contact the Open Food Facts LoCo Council. They can help you with any question or problem about your team, like how to grow your team, how to resolve issues that arise from time to time, and how to get resources such as official Open Food Facts conference packs. The LoCo council can be reached here: LoCo Council. You can also contact to the LoCo Council on Slack


List of active teams

List of teams

Typical Wiki Team structure

References

  1. (Adapted from the Ubuntu Loco Page)