Central Office Technical Capabilities
As an organization with new challenges to face every day and two separate corporate offices to manage, not to mention mentors scattered across college campuses, DREAM has harnessed a variety of technologies to facilitate effective communication and foster a group identity. Around the domain, dreamprogram.org, the organization offers a website, email, and distribution lists that can be used within the central office and for each local program. The central office has also acquired an ID card printer which will produce unique cards for both adults and children in the program. In addition to providing increased safety and security, the cards will also assist in the development of strategic partnerships with local merchants, using a discount-card model. DREAM created a program database to hold health, safety, and contact information about both the DREAM mentors and children. It also keeps track of partnerships over time, and is an easy reference for any inquiries into the current state of a local program. Through the database, we are able to maintain accurate and up to date screening information on each mentor. The Alumni Organization will eventually use it to keep graduated mentors involved in their partners’ lives and connected to the new mentors. Drawing from this data, we are able to create lists of health concerns, emergency contact information, program partnerships, and much more for the benefit of each local program. Looking ahead, the database will be accessible online to local programs, and will, in addition to its current reports, provide DREAM “Facebooks” (picture books of program partnerships) and DREAM ID cards.
DREAMPROGRAM.ORG... Early in 2002, DREAM launched its website. Originally hosted on Zach Berke’s computer, www.dreamprogram.org was soon transferred to a professional web hosting service that cost the organization eight dollars per month. The primary function of the web site has been to host information about DREAM that would be of interest to people who want to find out more about the organization. The daily updates of the high adventure program were one highlight during June and July. Soon after gaining its 501(c)(3) status in May, DREAM added the capability of accepting donations online. Through a service called Network for Good, DREAM receives 100% of every dollar donated online. The web site was instrumental in the year-end annual campaign, both to keep donors informed and as a tool for making donations. In 2003, DREAM is committed to improving the website’s content and capabilities. It will be a stronger resource for everyone in the organization, from children up to the Board of Directors, and will be more informative for those new to the organization. Within the first few months of 2003, visitors to the web site can expect to see a new look and growing functionality. 38
Published on Aug 26, 2012