Barcamp Ghana is a project being run by the GhanaThink Foundation, an NGO based both in Ghana and the USA. A BarCamp is a user-generated conference (or unconference). It is an open, participatory workshop-event, whose content is provided by participants. The Barcamp Ghana events are organized to forge networking, discussion, partnerships and change. The goal is to help Ghanaians learn about the issues that affect them, generate ideas for development, network and partner with others who have similar interests and improve or start businesses and projects.
The BarCamp Ghana team has successfully organized 22 BarCamps in Ghana since December 2008. Inspired by attending Barcamp Africa at the GooglePlex in Mountain View, California in October 2008, some member os the GhanaThink Foundation joined up with other young Ghanaian change makers to plan the first ever Barcamp in Ghana. Barcamp Ghana 2008 at the Kofi Annan Centre for Excellence in IT (KACE-AITI) on December 22, 2008 was a national event with the theme – ‘Fuelling Ghana’s Business and Tech Renaissance’. Barcamp Ghana 2009 followed at the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology in East Legon in Accra on December 21, 2009 with the theme – ‘Leadership for our times – cultivating change makers’. The Barcamp Ghana team decided to take the conversations and Barcamping spirit to other places in Ghana in 2010. These have been in Accra, Kasoa, Kumasi, Takoradi, Cape Coast, Sunyani, Tamale, Tema, and Ho.
The events have brought together over 3500 young change makers, doers and entrepreneurs. They have also given birth to some professional groups (including 4 Google Technology User Groups in Ghana and the Ghana Makers Group) and started up or supported new and ongoing enterprises and ventures. They have also educated attendees about many products and also given the opportunity for different businesses to get feedback on their products and improve their services. They have also inspired many Ghanaian youth to become agents of change and work smarter to shape the Ghanaian future. The events are contributing to building a network of young, positive-minded, innovative and entrepreneurial Ghanaians.
All Barcamps are convened under the leadership of the GhanaThink Foundation with support from young Ghanaians. All the events are free at no cost to the public to ensure as many diverse people attend. The events are supported by our partners and the venues are normally generously sponsored by various institutions. Some of our notable partners have been Google Ghana, Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST), Vodafone Ghana, Mobile Web Ghana, World Bank, Ashesi University, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kofi Annan Centre for Excellence in IT (KACE-AITI), Ushahidi, Blogging Ghana, etc.
Some of the speakers at past Ghana Barcamps have included Estelle Sowah (Google Ghana), Herman Chinery-Hesse (SoftTribe), George Allotey (American University Professor), Patrick Awuah (Ashesi University), Yoofi Grant (Databank), Amos Anyimadu (AfricaTalks), Albert Ocran (Combert Impressions), Lionel Dosoo (Ecobank), John Lemaire (AudioCraft), Saaka Abdulai (Rural Entrepreneur), Chemphe (Musician), Kwame Boohene (Businessman) and Douglas Adjepong (CEO of Leadership & Mentorship Academy).
It has also featured many younger change makers like Eyram Akofa Tawia (LetiGames), Nana Kwabena Owusu (Ignite Systems), Justin Dakorah (Ignite Systems), Esi Cleland (Afrochic Online), Derrydean Dadzie (DreamOval), Daniel Peprah (Baker Hughes), Cecil Nutakor (Equinox Intercom Limited), Ashifi Gogo (Sproxil), Bernard Avle (CITI FM), Leila Djansi (Turning Point Pictures), Farida Bedwei (Logiciel), Oluniyi David Ajao (Web4Africa Limited), Regina Agyare (Soronko Solutions), amongst others.
See pictures of past events on our Picasa. You can also find more pictures on the various Facebook pages.