Every time you access Wikipedia from a computer in Switzerland during the month of December you can expect to see a banner asking you to help fund projects in Switzerland. The online fundraising campaign aims to raise $50 million worldwide primarily from individual readers. Last year, Swiss donors gave an average of CHF 43. Wikipedia has no advertising and receives no government money.
Funds collected will be used to run the servers hosting Wikipedia and its sister projects. They will also help pay for the 200+ foundation staff members who keep Wikipedia running.
In Switzerland, Wikimedia CH will fund education projects in schools (such as Wikivillage, where high school students are encouraged to learn by improving Wikipedia articles related to their hometown) and in jails (with an offline version of Wikipedia developed in Zurich). It also supports the Wiki Loves Monuments programme, which collects the best pictures of all listed historical monuments. In 2014, donated money was also directly used to support a digitization project with the National Library.
Wikipedia was created in 2001 and has since become the largest encyclopedia in human history. Wikipedia’s total worldwide monthly readership is approximately 495 million. It was the fifthmost visited website in Switzerland (9.3 billion views). It hosts 33 million articles in 288 languages, including German, French, Italian, Alemannische and Romanche. Every month, roughly 2,000 active volunteers in Switzerland contribute to Wikipedia and the other Wikimedia projects.
“People donate to Wikipedia because they find it useful, and they trust it because even though it’s not perfect, they know it has the relevant information they are looking for”, said Charles Andres, Wikimedia Switzerland’s Chief Science Officer. “And if they see a mistake or that something is outdated, they can correct it in one click.”
To make a donation, click the banners at the top of Wikipedia, or go to https://www.wikimedia.ch/donate