training manual

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Refurbished Computers Program Development

VISTA Name: 
Jesse Schofield
Program Start: 
3/2008
Program End: 
7/2008
Project Description: 

Jesse assisted with the training of teachers and student in the refurbishing of computers. Jesse also recruited volunteers to assist with computer refurbishing. He introduced them to our program and made them aware of our procedures. He supported a program called TAP where we have trained Teachers to run after school clubs dealing with computer refurbishing. He also researched material to assist the teachers with technical assistance workshops. Jesse also assisted the manager with the general running of the office.

Project Outcome: 

Jesse was very successful dealing with the teachers and the students. He is very personable and patient with students. Jesse compiled a list of Internet Service Providers for the schools in the TAP program. He also researched organizations who may be able to provided assistance in the local areas. He also assisted with the planning and running of a camp for teachers and students which was held in July of this year.

Jesse was able to arrange for a Spanish translation of a training manual. This is important as we serve many Hispanic people.

Marketing and Design

VISTA Name: 
Derek Maxwell
Program Start: 
1/2007
Program End: 
1/2008
Project Description: 

The VISTA member provided and assited with an array of services and programs, including direct training to youth participants, development of training manuals and materials, website design and development, community outreach and recruitment, development of program materials including brochures, posters, and mailers, as well as other administrative duties.

Project Outcome: 

Our VISTA member compiled a catalogue of past and present programs and descriptions, helped move our website to a new design based on open source Drupal software, helped set up web hosting with other non-profits, developed training manuals and materials, and taught a graphic design course to youth, which we had never done before here at PCTV.

Database Development

Organization: 
El Centro de la Raza
VISTA Name: 
Mike Moore
Program Start: 
1/2007
Program End: 
3/2008
Project Description: 

Initially, the Vista member focused on database development to increase the technological capacity and efficiency of El Centro de la Raza (ECLR). Starting from scratch, Mr. Moore was able to build a centralized demographics database based primarily on Microsoft Access. In order to accomplish this, he needed to analyze previous systems utilized by staff, troubleshoot, and develop solutions to migrate the infrastructure in a manner that staff could utilize effectively. After completing this task, he completed a manual detailing usage and offered informal trainings to staff. The Vista member was also asked to update other databases (donor, volunteer, and grant tracker databases) in order to improve the tracking and reporting capacity of staff. Mr. Moore was also asked to monitored the server, install standard organizational computer configurations, update other technological systems, assist with events, and other software duties as necessary.

Project Outcome: 

Throughout the service year, Mr. Moore showed a great deal of flexibility by taking on new tasks and meeting agency needs as well as those specifically involving the databases. He also showed his development capability by increasing the effectiveness of our databases, and helping our staff increase their reporting accuracy. Mr. Moore’s efforts led to the following successes:

1. Developed a new centralized demographics database to prevent duplication in reporting to major funders,
2. Increased the efficiency of the donor database,
3. Increased the accuracy of the grant tracker database,
4. Increased the accuracy and usability of the volunteer database,
5. Began to rebuild ECLR’s homepage,
6. Helped fulfill ECLR’s server needs in the absence of a part-time IT Manager, ­
7. Helped to install standard software packages on new ECLR hardware, and
8. Assisted staff with Microsoft Office problems.

Mike Moore came to El Centro de la Raza expecting to primarily customize an existing system, migrate data, tutor users and monitor data input. However, by the end of the first week, our staff realized his experience and capabilities were well suited for so much more. Mike quickly realized that the database El Centro proposed to utilize was difficult to tailor to our needs. Compounding the problem was an IT Staff that was difficult to reach and slow to respond. Mike projected that this customization and full utilization process would take close to the entire year simply to implement, no less train staff and begin to migrate data. This was time that our agency did not have, as major funders pressed us to improve our accuracy and develop unduplicated counts of individuals served. Mike recognized the immediacy of our needs, and proposed to build a database specifically customized to track demographic data in a format we could fully utilize. Working alongside staff members from a number of different departments, Mike noted each person’s need and a series of solutions to maximize the database’s efficiency and usability. On top of accomplishing other tasks associated with his placement (tutoring and modifying other databases), Mr. Moore was able to complete a workable system in just under five months. This left plenty of time to migrate data to the system and meet all of our deadlines.

Miro in My Community Project Developer

VISTA Name: 
Anne Jonas
Program Start: 
9/2009
Program End: 
9/2011
Project Description: 

Miro in My Community (MMC) will create a series of community-based video hubs to connect local creators, public access stations, and the community of viewers. With these new hubs and the relationships that they form, vibrant local communities of video can flourish. Quite simply, we can create an active, citizen-driven, online television world for individual cities and towns.

A VISTA member could be instrumental in advancing this project. We need an individual who is both technically aware (though not necessarily a programmer) and interested in community building. The VISTA member will lead outreach to local access and public television stations in Massachusetts and around the country. The member will help us develop and deploy training manuals and will work with partner organizations to run training session for local participants.

Goal: To successfully roll out Miro Local TV in communities around Massachusetts and the US, by engaging with partner organizations and creating materials and workshops.

Project Outcome: 

Anne has been invaluable to PCF and has helped us grow as an organization. She, with support from myself as well as Nick Reville, has taken Miro Community from an early-stage project to a fully-fledged platform that is serving many communities.

Anne is beginning to work on making Miro Community a self-sustaining pillar in PCF’s arsenal. She has began to develop a userbase that will support the project with monthly fees and/or contracts.

Anne has started work on a miro community site that aggregates feminist video content from all over the web. It has began taking a life of its own and has been written up on feminist blogs and in Bitch Magazine.

We have a major piece of infrastructure up and running Thanks to Annie in her second year with PCF — our project, Miro Community, has matured and been picked up by organizations like Stanford, the Ford Foundation, the Pittsburgh Foundation, and many others. She has taken the lead on project management and partnership development, which has helped cement Miro Community as one of PCF’s three major pieces of open source software.

Impact Quote: 

Anne has surpassed our expectations in pretty much every way possible.”

- Dean Jansen, supervisor

Web Projects Coordinator

Organization: 
Grassroots.org
VISTA Name: 
Scott D'Antuono
Program Start: 
9/2009
Program End: 
9/2010
Project Description: 

In response to our rapid membership growth, we saw a rise in the demand for new products and services and realized the need for support tools for our other 3 existing services as well as the importance of support for new services as they are added. Our VISTA will build support resources and strengthen capacity of sub domain web content.

-Build comprehensive online training and support resources for remaining 3 applications in Toolbox and new applications as they are added to the Toolbox. Ensure that applications are fully sustainable & documented, saving staff time while helping smaller nonprofits make use of the Toolbox.

- Strengthen the capacity of Grassroots.org’s sub domain website content to serve nonprofits, recruit new members, and generate needed attention from nonprofits, volunteers, donors and partners.

-Manage Grassroots.org’s newsletters, recruit members/partners to publish entries for Grassroots.org blog

Project Outcome: 

Scott created help guides, Webinars and supplemental materials to make the Grassroots.org Toolbox experience seamless for al Grassroots.org members. Scott took over the management of our NING social networking site in addition to streamlining our SEO consulting program and making the application process for the Social Venture Consulting program more efficient. Scott authored an extensive amount of content on our blog, such as the “Tool of the Week” series and our “Faces of Change” video series. In addition, Scott created estore.grassroots.org (a promotional products website resulting in 4% donations for Grassroots.org) and was an essential force in creating Interns.org on Wordpress. Scott’s positive, can-do attitude enabled him to complete every project he was asked to complete.

Scott ended up developing our NING Community Networking site. Scott fully took over this project from the design to the moderation of the site. Scott also took on the role of reaching out face-to-face with our local members, something he had a personal interest in and showed initiative in doing. In addition to promoting Grassroots.org through attending “GrassrootsCamp” NY Tech Meetup events, Scott got involved in the projects of our member orgs. For example, Scott volunteered his time to sketch/design a handbook for Grassroots.org member “Getting Tools to City Schools” and their sustainable binder project. Scott is a true joy to have in the office and his greatest accomplishment in my opinion is his positive contribution to morale.

Impact Quote: 

Scott was able to accomplish every task that we gave him. Scott was very responsible about asking for help when he needed it and seeking out the tools he needed to complete tasks. It was a pleasure working with him throughout the year and in fact, we hired him at the end of his VISTA term.

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.

Communications Coordinator

VISTA Name: 
Oriana Magnera
Program Start: 
9/2009
Program End: 
9/2010
Project Description: 

We are seeking a CTCVISTA volunteer to assist with the our communications systems, specifically in regards to the development of a series of Project Initiative websites, and the internal and external communications mechanisms for project planning and development. This work would include web design and management, integration of social networking tools for initiative projects, communication support for project partners, interviews and podcasts with initiative participants, the development of online evaluative forms and database.

AmeriCorps*VISTA member will work with CDS staff to organize CDS information systems to support our organizations efforts including:

1. internal staff site for communication and information sharing,
2. public website (story theater, newsletter, curriculum, podcasts, program initiative kit),
3. marketing materials and activities (public screenings, brochures, email information campaigns, video PSA’s, surveys),
4. Training for staff, intern and volunteer in implementation of Initiative-based systems

Project Outcome: 

Principal Task: Internal and External Communications including web, electronic and printed materials. Oriana created a new and professional looking electronic and web quarterly newsletter featuring the Program Initiatives for the first time. She created a newsletter template, staff training materials, a form for collecting newsletter submissions, imported and organized thousands of contacts, managed the list and added new names on a quarterly basis. She completed both ongoing website updates as well as a round of improvements to the layout and information on the website. She began research for a new platform and web hosting service as well as prepared information about applying for a Tap Root Grant for web and marketing support which CDS will pursue in the spring of 2011. Creation of “Donate Now” button for CDS website to collect financial/in-kind donations. Creation of a multi-page guide to newsletter production and distribution.

Secondary Task: Oriana has also began making improvements in our internal communications. She has assisted with organizing materials on our internal Staff Site, managed any trouble-shooting issues with our email and web provider, and sent emails to our Program Initiative teams to collect information to place on the Staff Site as needed. She completed a Grant Writing Seminar and gathered and organized current and past grant proposals and resources from staff to place on the Staff Site for reference.

Greatly improved external communication and marketing through newsletter and public website. More connectivity between staff through email and internal staff site.

Oriana also undertook a complete re-layout of our book entitled Digital Storytelling: Capturing Lives, Creating Community. This task included converting book files from Framemaker to InDesign, revisions on every page of the book, as well as research for updating Technology Appendices and re-indexing the entire book.

Outreach and Development Coordinator

Organization: 
Quote-Unquote
VISTA Name: 
Erica Jones
Program Start: 
9/2009
Program End: 
9/2010
Project Description: 

This VISTA member, in their capacity as outreach assistant, would serve to bring new organizations and communities in to work with QUQ. The role of outreach assistant would be valuable experience for the VISTA member in networking, community organizing and learning about the community that she/he would be working and living in. It involves calling people, talking to them, sending them information by email, asking them to come to a meeting and to tour our studios.

The VISTA member would keep accurate records of contacts and the process of recruitment, as well as the steps and the results of fundraising efforts. These records would be used for the manual that would be developed in conjunction with the executive director.

Project Outcome: 

Some main areas that Erica helped to develop and expand are: Volunteer recruitment/outreach, Partnership Expansion/Outreach, and Fundraising development.

Volunteer outreach: Erica has set up an entire program of recruitment of volunteers. As a result we had as many as 19 volunteer interns at one time at our facility during the fall, spring and summer months. The recruitment efforts targeted local universities and high schools. The success was due to setting up face to face meetings as well as using Craig’s List, social media and e-newsletter contact. This was done in conjunction with the Executive Director.

Partnership Outreach: Erica also worked on setting up partnerships with the Albuquerque Convention and Visitors Bureau, Media Literacy Project, The Alibi (local weekly newspaper), Enlace Comunitario, SWOP, KUNM Youth Radio, Albuquerque Film Festival, SW Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, Taos Shortz Film Festival, Experimental Cinema Film Festival, New Mexico Daily Lobo, Public Service Media Project, NM Film Office, NM Thunderbirds, CitizenSchools, and the creation of an accredited production class through the University of New Mexico Continuing Education department.

Fundraising Outreach: Erica worked on many small scale and large scale fundraising efforts throughout the year. Some examples of these efforts are: “Benefit Night” fundraisers being help at T.G.I.Friday and Fuddruckers, a “TV Dinner” benefit event, a concert event at a local venue, and the development of a monthly media industry networking event held at a local restaurant. Other areas have included working alongside the Executive Director on research for and preparation of grants and foundation money. Examples of this assistance was the working on a letter of inquiry for the Glaser Foundation which focused on Independent Media projects. We pitched the creation of a youth-focused journalism and mentorship program. A letter of inquiry into the MacArthur Foundation, regarding the same project. The creation of a profile in multiple local community foundations. She did extensive research and compiling together of regional, state-wide, and national grants and foundations that could be potential sources for income. Erica also helped Steve Ranieri with researching and preparing the application for a grant through the McCune Foundation, a local foundation here in New Mexico.

Other general outreach efforts that Erica engaged in were attending various local outreach events, such as: NM Film and Media Day, Digital Arts Conference, NM Film conference, SW Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, Fiery Foods Show, and other events where the positive image of our organization was represented. All of these efforts were tracked, documented, and written into a manual titled “How to Outreach: a Resource Guide for Quote Unquote.” This resource will be left behind for future staff and VISTAs to refer back to for guidance.

Two other projects Erica worked on were the transitioning of the paper newsletter to the electronic newsletter and the transitioning of the Dreamweaver based website to a user-friendly, more efficient website through the Grassroots.org services. It developed through the need of better organizational efficiency. There was an indication that some staff had additional responsibilities that were taking them away from their actual work. With Erica noticing this, she suggested making these two main transitions as a means to alleviate extra work from staff (printing of newsletters, mailing them, updating the website using software that requires skills) and to build a more sustainable infrastructure.

YEAR 2
 ——

Erica has been active at Quote-Unquote building capacity both internal to the organization and exteranlly in the community. This has included develping advertising/marketing partnerships, outreach events, and developing trainings, curriculum, and research. On of the major programs Erica developed is the New Mexico Community Journalism Program, for which she developed the initial grant and has formed the core board which meets weekly to continuously fine tune our mission and purpose in the New Mexico Community. Erica has drafted letters of interest for people to invest and join the project as an anchor organization (content providers, mentors, and a place for community journalists to use for resources). This will help form the state-wide network we envision to help sustain the information flow throughout the state and will also help community journlists with guidance and resources to better serve the needs of their communities. This mission is: “Strengthen an emerging state-wide rural and urban multilingual news network that represents unheard, marginalized, and diverse voices, independent of government & corporate control, values, and content. We will provide a multimedia outlet for the news that the local residents determine, produce, and contribute, thus connecting them to the needs in their community.” Erica has also been a devoted VISTA Leader coordinating 20+ VISTAs and participating as a Leader Guide.

Outreach & Volunteer Coordinator

Organization: 
Latinitas
VISTA Name: 
Claudia Escobar Lopez
Program Start: 
9/2009
Program End: 
9/2010
Project Description: 

As part of the CTC VISTA Project, Latinitas would recruit a VISTA member to serve as an Outreach & Volunteer Coordinator. This position would assist with:
Primary Goals:
-organizing an advisory board that will develop a comprehensive curriculum guide with a series of media-based, enrichment activities for girls.
-coordinating a volunteer leadership team that will assist with future club leader recruitment, trainings and management
-developing training procedures and volunteer manuals to empower volunteer club leaders to guide girl empowerment activities
Secondary Goals
-creating a marketing plan to outline strategies for effectively recruiting volunteers, identifying strategic community partners and sponsors and beginning the initial phase of volunteer recruitment.

Throughout the project, the VISTA member will work directly with an advisory board and volunteers to develop a curriculum guides, club leader training manual, volunteer procedures and volunteer recruitment marketing plan. These tangible products will enable Latinitas to replicate our media-based, culturally-relevant, bilingual, girl enrichment programs into additional communities. Latinos make up about 15 percent of the U.S. population and are the largest and fastest growing population. Despite the growth and size of this population, very few programs exist nationally that focus specifically on this population. The tools developed in this project may serve as a model framework and curriculum to share with the field of Latina-focused girl empowerment programs nationally.

Project Outcome: 

Claudia has organized recruitment efforts, orientation sessions and meetings to help build our advisory board. She has been instrumental in developing and documenting the procedures for effective volunteer training and management. She has developed an orientation and training module which we will utilize in preparing future volunteer club leaders for their role in leading multimedia clubs for girls. In addition, she has developed a comprehensive volunteer leader manual which clearly outlines the role, responsibilities, procedures and policies in the management of volunteer led clubs. The manual includes club leader job descriptions, club meeting outlines, attendance policies, dress code, code of behavior, classroom management tips, mentoring tips, recruitment tips, Internet safety guidelines, material checklists, equipment checkout procedures, attendance sheets, volunteer hour logs, club member evaluations, club fact sheets and other valuable tips on managing a media club for girls. Furthermore, our VISTA member has worked collaboratively with a team of volunteers to develop a new Club Leader Curriculum Guide building on our library of club lesson plans. Thanks to support from our VISTA Member, we now have over 100 multimedia lesson plans developed that we can implement in our multimedia clubs. These lessons are focused on teaching young Latinas in grades 4-8 about how they can use media as a tool for creative self-expression. These lessons are bilingual and bi-cultural and focused on writing, art, photography, audio production, film making, desktop publishing and web design. Our VISTA has also initiated a pilot test program training 4 volunteers to lead volunteer media clubs. She has recruited the volunteer club leaders, implemented and tested a club leader training session and provided technical support to our club leaders. The volunteer training module and curriculum guide has proven to work successfully with this group and our VISTA member is helping us lay the foundation to implement this program on a larger scale in the future.

Since our VISTA member is perfectly fluent in Spanish and English, she was able to assist us in translating numerous documents in our volunteer training manual as well as other materials for the public. We work with a largely Spanish-speaking population of recent immigrants, so her assistance in creating bilingual materials was a great asset in preparing all the needed documents for our volunteers to go out into the community to serve Spanish-speaking girls and families. In addition, our VISTA member developed a volunteer recognition procedures to assist in our volunteer retention efforts including creating volunteer certificates and awards, organizing volunteer appreciation events and developing a system for recognizing volunteers in our newsletter and special events.

Transmission Project