Social media working for the 3rd sector
The last of a series of guest blogs by local organisations writing about the successes they have had with social media. For this final blog I am delighted to have case studies from Wayne Clinton, founder of Disability Online and Denise and Jane, co-founders of Unique Kidz and Co; both charities in the Lancaster district.
Wayne Clinton- Disability Online
Social media has helped my organisation grow since Feb 2012. We have Twitter & Facebook, and we currently have over 300 Facebook members and over 1200 followers on Twitter.
We post regular news blogs on our website www.disabilityonline.org.uk which in turn posts to Twitter & Facebook.
We feel that without Social Media we wouldn’t be able to reach as many people as we do. We are able to offer our advice service through these methods and that helps our members immensely.
Without the likes of Facebook & Twitter we feel that our message about Disability Issues wouldn’t be able to get across to all those we do.
I also feel we can connect with other social media groups & exchange the knowledge we have & arrange events that can be advertised on Facebook.
Social media sites do also help Not for Profit & Charity organisations to publicise events that would otherwise cost a lot of money.
Social Media helps us to develop our organisation and reach more people than we could have dreamt of.
Disability on line provides Free and Independent Advice on Disability Hate Crime, Access issues, Benefits and much more.
Find them on twitter@Disabilitynet
Wayne was recently nominated in the National Diversity Awards and won the Community Organisation Award for Working with Disability.
Denise and Jane – Unique Kidz and Co
Face book – For the last 2 years and we have found that is a really useful platform for connecting with parents and carers who use our service, as many of them use it as a source of support and information due to the sometimes isolating feeling that often goes hand in hand with being a parent of a disabled child.
Our parents have also set up a closed group themselves for all our regular parents/carers who come to our parent’s group, to talk confidentially about things happening with their children and families.
This Summer our Business Development Manager Caroline delivered our first “Inclusive Play Training Course” for professionals and we set up a Unique Training Facebook page to post pictures of the delegates getting involved with hands on activities on the course and post their feedback.
Twitter – We have had an account for 16 months but have only been really using it regularly for the last year , when after attending one of Jane Binnion’s courses we felt 100% confident.
Twitter has been a great source of information. By following disability groups and other charities, we can keep up to date on policy and media stories. We have used twitter as a great way to network with parents from around the country and discovered events and products that we would never of know about. We have had fantastic support from business’s recently while promoting our first Charity Ball with people contacting us to offer auction items and raffle prizes and general support.
We have received lovely feedback from parents about our service via twitter and also lots of congratulations when we recently won two awards.
Social media is great for charities as it’s free but it can take up a lot of time and be daunting if you have no knowledge of it previously like us! We have always known that networking is an essential tool for our Charity and this really is networking, just in a different way.
Jane and Denise recently won the EVA New Business of the Year award NW, and the Selnet Small Social Enterprise of Year – Enterprise in Society Awards.
Find them on twitter@UniqueKidzandCo and on facebook