outreach

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Outreach & Volunteer Coordinator

Organization: 
Homeless Prenatal Program
VISTA Name: 
Scott Reed
Program Start: 
7/2009
Program End: 
7/2010
Project Description: 

The ultimate goal of this VISTA project is to shine the spotlight on HPP’s mission and work, raising visibility for a wide audience: current and prospective donors, volunteers, and a diverse community of San Francisco families who need our services.

With direction from the project manager and Development Director, the VISTA will develop creative methods for collecting the many stories of need, perseverance and success that buzz around our client programs and are the pride of our client services staff. The VISTA will gather these stories, in addition to news and events about the agency, and distribute the information to the community through a variety of channels.

Goal 1: Drive traffic to Web site and convert visitors into members, volunteers and advocates

Goal 2: Create sustainable process for content gathering and distribution at HPP

Project Outcome: 

Scott worked with mentor Brittney Fosbrook to create an ongoing, nearly self-sustainable strategic plans for a volunteer-run program in our Community Technology Center. Scott created an online volunteer guide which contains all the “how to’s” and useful links for our volunteers.The guide also contains volunteers agreements and lab rules. Scott also worked with our Systems Administrator to create customized, bilingual computer profiles for our clients, making it easier for our guests to login and use the lab with minimal computer experience. Scott also cleaned up the space physically, getting rid of unused materials and installing useful information sheets for additional resources. In addition to volunteer outreach, Scott also conducted major outreach to clients and to our case management staff, so that they understand the resources available and their potential value to clients.

The volunteer program in the CTC has been successful in that it has increased lab attendance, increased volunteer engagement, and has decreased the amount of staff time necessary to run the lab. However, the CTC is not able to self-sustain on volunteers alone. Scott has been hired as a full-time employee, with half-time duties related to CTC coordination.

Scott was a key player in HPP’s first steps in social media, creating a Facebook and Twitter presence, as well as advising the development of our revamped website. This developed as the need was identified at HPP and matched Scott’s skills and interests.

Outreach Coordinator

VISTA Name: 
John Haffner
Program Start: 
9/2009
Program End: 
9/2010
Project Description: 

The VISTA member would conduct a three-month Community Needs Assessment to survey community organizations, members, board members, staff and community leaders for CMAP & AMP.

a) Provide in–depth analysis of what organizations currently are offering to the communities served, (services packages, community involvement, and community media offerings) and research opportunities for collaboration.

b) Report to Executive Directors on the Community Assessment Results and present recommendations

c) Develop a manual for collaborative work: “Cookbook for Regional Community Media Collaboration” that would be published in print and web form. This cookbook would inspire and create a template for other community media and community technology organizations to work more collaboratively in this new economic environment which requires and encourages new kinds of collaboration and partnerships.

d) Present this cookbook as a body of work at the ACM National Conference in July of 2010 to encourage and give specific examples of new innovative approaches to regional collaboration among community media centers.

Project Outcome: 

With the help of our first-year DASC member, we have expanded collaborations with other community media centers in the state and region, sharing technology, marketing, educational content and curriculum to media centers and non-profit organizations.
-Increased communication with between two media centers to enable collaboration on several key projects including growing capacity of both organizations to fundraise, use technology tools, and manage staff and members.
-Increased communication enabling the implementation of new technology resources, including access to other center’s technical staff, new equipment for CMAP’s institutional network and engineering expertise from other centers.
-Increased CMAP’s ability to fundraise/build community awareness
-Helped to initiate new strategies to develop and share community content between centers.

Based on the success of the first year of this project, we are now in the second year, expanding to a statewide collaboration. For the first year, both organizations expanded our capacity through seeing the need to hire staff for fundraising, collaborated on grants that resulted in funding and staffing, and created an expanded collaboration program into our region. After the second year, we hope that agencies will work together regularly to continue this collaboration.

Our VISTA accomplished all of what was included in our project, but also helped to write grants for the organizations and learned development skills. He was hired by one of the media centers after the project to be a development assistant. He also became involved in developing the second year plan for our expanded collaboration.

Community Outreach and Accessibility Development

VISTA Name: 
Anita Lie
Program Start: 
6/2007
Program End: 
6/2009
Project Description: 

Since it opened over 8 years ago, the DISKovery Center has provided technology education services to over 3,000 community members in a wide range of skills and computer applications. Over 100 members, who include youth, adults, and seniors, enroll in over 20 classes at the DISKovery Center’s programs every quarter.

The DISKovery Center is seeking a full-time VISTA volunteer (monthly stipend provided) to help build the capacity of the Center to reach out to learners with physical and developmental disabilities through assistive technology, program planning, staff training, and community outreach. The VISTA member will assist the program manager with a variety of responsibilities, including the following duties:

• Develop strategies for outreach to persons with disabilities

• Collaborate with other organizations to develop outreach plans to expand our presence in the disabled community.

• Participate in assistive technology trainings provided by our collaborators to become an in-house accessibility specialist, who will then train other staff on teaching strategies

• Develop resources for accessibility including training materials for both staff and individuals with disabilities

• Help develop a new space plan at the center for better accessibility

• Help establish and coordinate a committee composed of staff, members and volunteers to inform the center on disability access needs.

• Help develop a new intake survey and registration process incorporating disability information, and revamp the current database to track this information.

Project Outcome: 

Our CTC VISTA is the DISKovery Centers Accessibility Coordinator. She coordinated all of the meetings with staff and project partners. She also became our in-house AT specialist, and helped recommend our software and hardware purchases. She has developed advanced curriculum at Pacific Bridge. She has also coordinated and facilitated the access committee meetings. Our VISTA has also coordinated our Computer Adoption Program and has developed curriculum for the program. She has also trained staff on the Ubuntu Operating system so that staff can then teach the participants enrolled in our Computer Adoption Program.

Although we have partnered with other organizations that have given us a small number of users with disabilities, we are still short of our goals. Our VISTA has assisted on our outreach plan, and has developed outreach materials but both our centers in Little Tokyo and Echo Park are struggling increase our numbers.

Impact Quote: 

Our VISTA has been invaluable in assisting the center with its accessibility goals, and has been central in coordinating all aspects of the DISK4All Project. She has been committed to utilizing information and communications technologies to address the needs of our communities. Without our VISTA we would not have the staff nor capacity to achieve our accessibility goals.”
- Steve Wong, supervisor

Marketing and Outreach

Organization: 
Pro Bono Net
VISTA Name: 
Stephanie Lin
Program Start: 
7/2009
Program End: 
7/2010
Project Description: 

A VISTA member would work with Pro Bono Net staff to define short and long-term strategic outcomes for immigrants’ rights initiatives, create a project plan, and support Pro Bono Net and its partners in achieving outcomes defined in the project plan. Each of these initiatives uses technology to benefit low-income immigrants.

Goal 1: To provide strategic guidance and technical support for Pro Bono Net’s immigrants’ rights initiatives
Goal 2: Work with Pro Bono Net staff and partners to develop a training curriculum and toolkit to support the nonprofit immigrants’ rights sector
Goal 3: Research, implement and support new technology projects

Project Outcome: 

Stephanie’s primary focus was to develop a marketing database and other technology tools to expand our membership. In the year that Stephanie spent with us we increased our membership by approximately 1/3.

Stephanie’s efforts lead to a significant increase in membership as well as developed a robust marketing and outreach database that will continue to be a valuable tool for our project.

Stephanie took on a number of ad hoc research and other projects based on her interest in immigration law and policy. She also helped to support our social networking initiatives and overall content management.

Online eLearning Tools for Farmers Development

VISTA Name: 
John Dorman
Program Start: 
7/2009
Program End: 
7/2010
Project Description: 

Widespread access to computers among socially disadvantaged farmers has expanded opportunities to provide educational materials online. The New Entry website is currently used to post information about our training programs and resource guides. We have not yet tapped the potential of this site to connect with broader audiences for outreach and training through distance learning.

Optimal learning for farmers takes place through visual and interactive processes. Development of enhanced digital media is currently an important New Entry priority for both training and outreach purposes in order for our program to expand. As a result, the VISTA Member will manage all aspects of developing digital media in three main areas: online courses, webcasts, and video clips.

Goal #1 – Convert Six On-line Courses from Written to Digital Media
Goal #2 - Development of Three Webcasts
Goal #3 – Develop Video Clips for Low-Literacy Population in Areas of Outreach
Goal #4 – Evaluation of Process

Project Outcome: 

In addition to completing most of the assignments originally envisioned for John’s year with New Entry, John completed assignments which went well beyond the stated goals in the original proposal. In addition to the three workshop videos to be included in the online curriculum, John developed a Seedling Training video for on-line curriculum use.

The sustainability of John’s contributions will remain significant, well into the future. In addition to developing solid working curriculum for on-line use, John developed important foundations upon which New Entry curriculum can expand. John established a formula for production of workshop videos, on-line curriculum videos, and Farmer-to-Farmer Moments. This formula will be repeated with each new video which is produced into the future. John also converted our lending library of VHS tapes into DVDs to both extend the shelf life of the videos and make them available to clients with DVD players. John also participated in outreach activities and made important partnerships throughout the area.

Outreach and Website Development

VISTA Name: 
Jasmine Shepard
Program Start: 
7/2009
Program End: 
7/2010
Project Description: 

Creating a successful, user-friendly, all-inclusive database of technology organizations and WiFi locations will require a time and effort commitment that is beyond our means at this time. A CTC VISTA member will help us expedite the process of developing the database, and allow us to finally get this project off the ground.

- Research and catalog organizations that offer technology services
- Establish and manage relationships with technology organizations
- Develop and maintain the “Digital Inclusion Oakland” website
- Help update the OTX West website

Project Outcome: 

The corps member created the website getconnectedoakland.org. She researched computer related resources (i.e. education and training, tech support, free internet hotspots, where to purchase or acquire a free refurbished computer) in Oakland and the surrounding area. This information is now available on the website. The member has also spent time creating fliers and other marketing tools to get the word out about the website to the citizens of Oakland. The member has also sat in on computer classes taught by other organizations and shared information with them about open source software and other free online resources that can enhance their current curriculum and training.

Now that the website is up and running, we can now refer our clientele to the website for any technology needs. We also use the website to locate resources and recommend them to the community we serve. The website will be maintained by staff members at OTX West. Former VISTA member, Jasmine, has been hired and will be one of the main people maintaining the site.

Jasmine also created online Google forms for our volunteer registration and computer class registration and sign in. We used paper registration forms and needed an easy way to convert our paper forms to online forms for easy access.

Online Marketing and Outreach Development

VISTA Name: 
Joseph Crugnale
Program Start: 
7/2009
Program End: 
7/2010
Project Description: 

We would like to host a VISTA member who will develop effective social media communication that will support and complement A-VOYCE’s existing communications and outreach structure. The VISTA member will primarily be responsible developing our use of social media tools such as, but not limited to, Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, blogs, wikis, for publicity, marketing, and fundraising purposes. The VISTA will develop training material for youth and staff on blogging, podcasting, digital and social media. ACDC needs to capitalize on social networking media and build our organizational capacity through increased use of technology-enabled venues.

Goal: To create and implement a web-based marketing and outreach strategy for ACDC and A-VOYCE youth development program in order to maximize the program’s outreach and fundraising capacity

Project Outcome: 

One of my main tasks is putting together our Annual Report. One of the more interesting elements of the report has been coordinating Chinese translations that accurately capture our programs; luckily there are staff members here who are able to help out with this.

The power of Facebook, Twitter, and many other forms of social media continue to fascinate me. We have some really innovative urban planning, human development, and youth-based programs which I think have great potential to be marketed using social media. It will be a good experiment to see just what is possible using these up and coming tools.

I have been able to apply my IST monies towards an accounting class. While at first glace an accounting class may not seem relevant to my marketing and communications work, it has been beneficial as I am gaining a greater understanding of how my organization operates. Additionally, it has helped me draft the important financial sections of our annual report, and compile content for charity rating websites which closely examine non-profit finances.

Online Community Manager

VISTA Name: 
Donna Choi
Program Start: 
7/2009
Program End: 
7/2010
Project Description: 

This project will strengthen both our capacity to deliver services to our member organizations and simultaneously encourage them to share knowledge and best practices among themselves by connecting them, encouraging collaboration, and disseminating content and analyses through social media tools and technologies. The VISTA staffer will further develop our social networking capabilities, broadening and deepening our engagement with people through these interfaces. They are absolutely crucial to keep the organization lively and useful, and draw new members in. Social media is rapidly becoming a core demand that people want and need as part of a membership of a national network that seeks to bring organizations together.

1. Manage and contribute to the 2009-10 Technology Infrastructure plan, which will continue to build the capacity of our members’ to connect and work with each other more fully.
2. Work in collaboration with program staff to create new content and interactive areas of the NAMAC website; edit and post web content regularly to keep it fresh and relevant; maintain the website and its technical needs.
3. Work with staff to set a social media strategy, and build out NAMAC’s capacity to reach members and the public through social media tools.
4. Work with NAMAC staff to pilot a series of webinars on the use of social media tools.
5. Expand and publish NAMAC’s web-based toolkits and guides to build capacity of our members’ organizations.
6. Work with staff to engage and reach out to members by communicating with them regularly through social media platforms; and develop metrics for NAMAC-based website and social networking usage.

Project Outcome: 

Donna completed several significant web-based graphic design and technical projects during her assignment with NAMAC. She has significantly built the capacity of NAMAC’s online interactivity and resource-sharing to reach and assist members and the public around the country and globally.

Donna’s primary focus has been on developing the interactivity of the NAMAC website, in particular the Idea Exchange. This entails identifying which actions/networks are key for building our online presence and in building strong relationships with a team of bloggers who represent a cross-section of our online community, in terms of region, discipline, generation, and other important demographic criteria.

We have received increased traffic to our website, and conduct most of our membership business via the website: from conference and event registration to promotion and marketing, to resource-sharing, news and analysis across the field. The new look and architecture that Donna instituted has branded NAMAC as a leading web presence and has integrated well with our Facebook, Twitter and YouTube social media platforms.

Impact Quote: 

Not only did Donna meet our goal to redesign the website look, but she exceeded it. She gave the site a look that is striking and refined, and easy to work with by any new OCM. She worked out Drupal bugs, and brought Drupal developers in as consultants to upgrade the site to the current Drupal iteration. She interfaced with them throughout the changeover process. - Jack Walsh, VISTA Supervisor

Social Media Development

Organization: 
Reel Grrls
VISTA Name: 
Nickey Robare
Program Start: 
7/2009
Program End: 
7/2010
Project Description: 

In our recent strategic planning process, we determined that our use of online outreach tools (our website, blog, YouTube channel and multiple social networking sites) were not yet in alignment with our mission of being a fresh, vibrant youth media organization that uses the latest technology to empower our constituency. We envision that a CTC VISTA volunteer will 1) evaluate our current online outreach strategy and tools, 2) implement a new strategy to update our current website and use of other online tools as well as expand into other social networking platforms (e.g., Twitter, text messaging) and 3) develop a plan for the organization to sustain these practices in the future.

Our CTC VISTA volunteer will have two primary roles during his or her period of service with Reel Grrls: 1) to support the expansion and relaunch of our website 2) to take the lead in conceiving, launching and managing social networking/marketing opportunities and building a meaningful online presence for our organization.

Specific tasks will include:
-Develop evaluation criteria and goals for website relaunch and conduct interviews w/stakeholders for input
-Write online outreach strategic plan recommendations and present to staff and board
-Prepare & upload media for streaming/online applications
-Update and design quarterly enews format, as well as regular blog, facebook, text and twitter posts
-Track and evaluate website traffic for increase in participant/sales/fundraising goals
-Incorporate new online strategy into organizations overall technology plan
-Train staff in sustaining website and online outreach tools at completion of project

This individual will have the responsibility of evaluating online ventures, assessing the efficacy of different strategies, educating staff, and making these new activities sustainable. As part of the social networking and fundraising activities, this individual will also help build online partnerships and visibility for the media created by our participants.

Project Outcome: 

Nickey has totally revamped our social marketing presence and strategy, increasing our Facebook network to over 1200 fans and bringing our Twitter followers to over 1700. She also revived our long-dormant blog - helping develop a schedule and model for posts from staff and participants, redesigned our YouTube channel, participated in our website redesign project with the Taproot foundation, and redesigned our templates for program outreach and registration. Nickey has done a great job of developing new ideas and really showing leadership in terms of growing our online community - and understanding how to be an active contributing participant in networks like Twitter and Facebook. Where many organizations will simply Tweet or post about their own successes, Nickey has helped us learn to offer interesting articles, videos, analysis and funding opportunities to our networks. That way, when it does come time to promote our own programming or events, our network doesn’t feel bombarded by asks. She and I have worked closely together in developing strategies and making decisions, and she has shown great initiative and leadership skills in being able to take projects from idea to execution.

Thanks to Nickey’s efforts at developing our online presence, Reel Grrls has become a significant contributor to online discussions of women and media within the Twitter community. Many of our outreach materials - in print and online - have had major facelifts. And we’ve finally launched the “GAB (Grrls Advisory Board)” - a youth-led advisory group that was in the works for a long time before Nickey’s energy was able to bring it to life. We are currently working to reframe our intern job descriptions to include some of the work that Nickey has been doing on an ongoing basis. Additionally, Nickey is developing a social marketing handbook that will help us integrate ongoing social marketing tasks into permanent staff members’ duties.

Nickey has a great eye for graphic design, so she has pitched in to help redesign program outreach materials, event programs, enewsletters and DVD covers - which has been a huge asset in presenting a vibrant image of Reel Grrls to the outside world. Nickey has also jumpstarted our Grrls Advisory Board, led a couple of Reel Grrls Productions projects for clients, and started a plan to create a sales catalogue of our DVD library.

Website and Social Media Development

Organization: 
Zumix
VISTA Name: 
Sharon Small
Program Start: 
7/2009
Program End: 
7/2010
Project Description: 

VISTA would have to analyze the current use of volunteers, interns and staff and create documentation that describes what Zumix will need to move into its new, larger space at the firehouse. VISTA will explore local businesses and non-profits and create relationships that will benefit the radio station, either by bringing in underwriting or creating new opportunities for program content. VISTA may be be asked to help in various fundraising efforts, like the Walk for Music and help develop a fee-for-service plan. He or she may be asked to help design, administer and collate program evaluations or be involved in other organizational outreach and development. VISTA will create documentation so that youth, in conjunction with Zumix staff, will be able to continue work that has begun.

Goal 1: Solicit 5 underwriters for Zumix Radio
Goal 2: Create a plan for the mainstreaming of Interns and volunteers at the Firehuose.

Project Outcome: 

Sharon was responsible for expanding our use of social media and for upgrading the website. She assisted with the implementation of radio schedules and class curriculum. She was part of the team that coordinated live broadcasts and ran her own radio show.

Our ability to use social media in basically now in place, as is the process for website updating. The radio curriculum has been further refined.

Transmission Project