100,000 EUR for ESF!
In order to celebrate the registration of the 100,000th user of Lernu.net, the lernu!-team, in cooperation with E@I, has launched a fundraising campaign on behalf of Esperantic Studies Foundation (ESF). They aim to raise 100,000 EUR by December 15th, 2012.
“Without ESF, the Esperanto community would offer fewer services to Esperantists, as well as those who want to learn the language” – that’s how the lernu!/E@I team explains their wish to help ESF continue its good work in the article “What is ESF and why it deserves your support” that appeared in the October issue of La Ondo de Esperanto. “This is quite an ambitious venture”, admits the team, “but it can be done if many Esperantists support this initiative”. The team created a special website for this campaign: http://kampanjo.ikso.net.
Founded in 1968, ESF became one of the largest investors in the modern Esperanto community, and even though a relatively small number of Esperantists has heard of the Foundation itself, people from all over the world may enjoy the fruits of its work. Many large and well known projects have received ESF’s financial support, including websites promoting Esperanto instruction (lernu.net and edukado.net), Esperanto teaching programs in schools (‘Springboard to Languages’ in Great Britain) and teachers’ training courses (Renato Corsetti was given an ESF scholarship to train teachers in Africa). The instructional video course ‘Esperanto - Pasporto al la Tuta Mondo’ and informational film ‘Esperanto estas…’ were also created thanks to ESF’s support. The foundation has supported non-Esperantists as well: for example, the film director Sam Green received a grant for his documentary on Esperanto. Many tools for those who already speak Esperanto were created due to ESF investments, including the Esperanto web corpus tekstaro.com, where one may find out the historical usage of an Esperanto word. ESF has also invested in the conservation of Esperanto history: to cite one example, it financed the long term effort of UEA to preserve the collection of the Hodler Library. These are only a few examples of the many projects supported by ESF over the course of its 40 year history.
The lernu! team decided to launch this fundraising campaign because of ESF’s important role in the creation and support of lernu.net. “Thanks to ESF’s support, lernu.net has grown to a community of more than 103,000 users and it exists in 37 languages”, explains the team. Even though a large part of the modern Esperanto movement is centered in Europe, Lernu has many thousands of users outside Europe: over 2600 in Africa, over 3000 in Oceania, over 11,500 in Asia, and over 35,000 in America. Almost all countries are represented among lernu! users. There are learners in Burma, Afghanistan, Reunion; there are lernu! users in Turkmenistan, in Palestine and in Botswana. Many of these students don’t have Esperanto teachers, but with the help of the Internet, lernu! brings Esperanto courses to their homes free of charge.
Many prominent Esperantists have expressed their support for the fundraising campaign. Mark Fettes, vice president of ESF and former UEA board member, noted: “With the internet era, our world has shrunk, while the possibilities to quickly communicate, decide and act have significantly grown. Gradually, our whole movement will need to adapt, but ESF is already showing the way by supporting promising initiatives in the fields of education, science and technology. If you donate to ESF, be assured that your money will be used for specific, well managed projects that will increase the prestige, visibility and value of Esperanto in our era of globalization”.
Read the full version of the article at http://blogo.ikso.net/2011/09/kio-estas-esf-kaj-kial-gi-subtenindas/ (Esperanto only).
Visit the website "100,000 EUR for ESF!”: http://kampanjo.ikso.net
About ESF’s plans on the expansion of Lernu.net http://esperantic.org/eo/komunikado/novajxoj?n=57