WASHINGTON, DC: The Interactive Media Council has awarded the National Peace Corps Association (NPCA) for its Africa Rural Connect (ARC) project, an online project launched last summer. The NPCA is this year's awardee of an Interactive Media Award (IMA). With an overall score of 463 under the category “agriculture,” ARC won the 2010 Outstanding Achievement Award, the second highest honour bestowed by IMA.
“We are thrilled to be recognised for the planning and execution of a very creative online community,” said Molly Mattessich, manager of online initiatives for the National Peace Corps Association and a former Peace Corps volunteer in Mali. “We hope this recognition will draw even more people to the site to submit their ideas and engage in a discussion on how to help rural Africa.”
Now in its second year, ARC is an online community hosted by NPCA that encourages the remixing of ideas to spur collaboration and develop new ways to help solve rural Africa's challenges. The site is powered by a software program called Wegora, which allows users to read and remix each other's ideas online.
The IMAs are issued by the Interactive Media Council and recognise website design and development. Judges evaluate each website on five different criteria including design, content, feature functionality, standards compliance and usability and those that receive the highest scores are considered for an award.
“Africa Rural Connect is a growing online community that's already generated hundreds of innovative ideas to help address rural issues facing farmers like food insecurity and lack of water resources,” adds Mattessich. "Receiving an award like this from leading professionals in the industry is a testimony to our commitment to bring together returned volunteers, the African diaspora and anyone who has lived and worked in Africa to come together and share their knowledge and ideas.”