Internal software infrastructure for grassroots groups
Only 14 more days to sign-up for PTP’s Training on Databases and Technology Assessment and Planning taking place April 2-4, 2008 in Minneapolis, MN
If your organization is looking to improve its database, this is the program to dig in and find out what PTP has learned from the best practices in the field.
Our Database, Assessment, and Planning COaTI (Community Organizing and Technology Institute) is designed for organizers who want to build up their database skills, develop a better understanding of what databases can and can’t do, and deepen their understanding of how a specific technology fits into a broader vision for your organization and its technology use. This COaTI features a combination of large group, small group, and hands-on work. While we will provide computers for the training, participants are encouraged to bring a laptop and a copy of your organization’s database.
Our organization uses technical volunteers to provide free email and web hosting to 33 organizations. We just finished a $20,000 http://mass-service.org grant to recruit, train and support volunteers in providing on-site computer support to 6 organizations. We'd like to share our successes and failures over the past 5 years. The format of the workshop is Q&A. If the workshop participants don't have questions for us, we will have questions for them.
This session will explore the potential for technology to facilitate "Regenerative Commerce" in support of local community. Using the example of the recently launched Boston Community Change program (www.bostoncommunitychange.org) we will explore the integration of social networking technology, open source application and financial exchanges. We will also consider other creative potential for growth through the integration of and meshing of further technolgies such as U-Payment and SecondLife.
Energy Justice Network is developing a web-based database and GIS mapping project to track all of the existing, proposed, closed and defeated polluting waste and energy facilities in the U.S. Once set up, this ambitious project will enable people to find out what toxic hazards exist or may soon exist in their communities and will be able to use the site to locate community groups that are fighting these industries. Using this as a tool to build grassroots networks, such as our "No New Coal Plants" network, information will be fed into the system in both centralized and decentralized ways, fa
This session will explore how information and communications technologies are being adapted to the needs of people at the most local levels. Facilitator Michele Masucci will share experiences in building youth and community educational partnerships in inner-city Philadelphia, and Paul Schroeder will reflect on use of technologies in solid waste advocacy in rural Maine. Most of the session will be devoted to open discussion about the particular challenges faced by informal, marginalized and resource-poor individuals and groups. Are technologies helping to provide fairness for groups at the geographic and social margins? Participants will be asked to help frame the discussion through responses to three broad questions, now posted at:
Data standards, that is, how data is stored and communicated, is often considered too esoteric, or sometimes just too boring, for most activists and nonprofits to care much about. Even many techies that work for nonprofits don't often think much about them. But they are important - because your data, and what you can do with it is important. Open standards are data standards and formats that are not owned by anybody - they are collectively designed, and disseminated freely. This talk is designed to explain why it's important to know about Open Standards, why it's important to use software that incorporates open standards, and why, in the process of any software development or implementation project, use of open standards should be part of the picture.
We are working on choosing a software to replace our Raiser's edge.
Fundraisersoftware.com is top of the list.
But I would like to find a software that ..
One.. has a more robust database that we can tie into for other needs
Two.. can share the contacts with the entire office since we have overlapping contacts and a need for a contact management system in other departments
Three.. allows seemless web integration with our existing joomla/drupal mysql cms
Four.. Does live transactions of donations and does not need to have web based entries re-entered.
Since 2002, Organizers' Collaborative (OC) has provided nonprofits with a Windows based membership software program, based initially on a system we developed for our own use. We named this software program the Organizers Database (ODB).
ODB allows even tiny, technologically challenged community groups to computerize key tasks like managing donor lists, generating mass emails, processing donations and thank you notes, and tracking their volunteers.
In 2006 OC released ODB 1.0 which adds note tracking, pledge tracking, custom reports, and ability to handle much larger lists.
Ease of set-up, rapid customizability, and availability of source code have made ODB a breakthrough program for US-based nonprofits.