Please email new requests directly to our web coordinator. Responses will be emailed promptly to the groups in need of help. Thank you for considering doing service!
Help us answer the GTA phone lines
“Hello this is Al-Anon.
How may I help you?”
Volunteers for telephone answer service are always needed. This is a great Al-Anon service opportunity.“Participation is the key to harmony” (Concept 4). This is done from your home. All information is provided. Contact information about this service:
email Rose at email@example.com, or call the number 416-410-3809.
(2021, Ongoing service request)
Are YOU interested in standing for the position of Ontario South Website Coordinator…? Contact me!
Our programs encourage us to live in today’s day, and to make choices that bring us joy and serenity in the here and now, instead of staring into the rear-view mirror. While applying that principle to my life at a daily basis, I cannot help but also think of the future, every now and then. The year 2023 will be my 3rd official year as your Website Coordinator. My 4th, if you count the year 2020, when I was asked to jump in for the redesign and update of our Ontario South website. And I wonder if there are members out there, who would have an interest in standing for this position, when rotation knocks at the door in 2024 or maybe even sooner… Maybe even you?
I am currently the ‘acting website coordinator’. I am unfortunately no longer able to perform this service fully in all its facets. So if you feel an urge to stand for the full position, I will certainly do my very best to help you transition into all aspects of it. That is a task on my list that I will always take very seriously and I will do what I can to acclimate you to it gradually. Some of this position’s nature is of course technical, and that might require a bit of natural skill and interest. The hand-over will therefore probably take a bit longer than 1 minute 🙂
Not just technical
This position might seem daunting when you focus on just the technical part of the work that needs to be done. But there is a strong ‘hands-on-program-work’ element to it as well. How so? Well, think of keeping in touch with newcomers who regularly write to the website (at least one per month). Sometimes 12th Step work is limited to helping them how to find a meeting, but other times a personal phone call or email message is more relevant. And there are even cases where you may choose to physically meet with a newcomer, and accompany them to their first meeting. Every coordinator deals with this in their preferred way. There is a lot of freedom for personal initiative in this position, so that you can make it your own.
Being a website coordinator holds lots of opportunities for personal and technical skill-development. It gives a whole new perspective to doing service for the Al-Anon community.
The (program) tools of the trade: hardware, software and humanware
For starters: there is huge benefit in having a stable and fast internet connection. Nothing is more annoying that waiting long minutes before a webpage is loaded. Not everyone is blessed with good infrastructure, but it sure helps!
An up to date computer
Similar to the above: having access to a current-model computer with an updated operating system is a ‘must’ for all required software to run safely and smoothly. There is currently no Area hardware available for this position, which makes sense, because hardware simply ages too quickly these days. This position is assumed to be the best fit for members, who have their own hardware, that originates from a natural affinity with computers and (some) technology. Currently, all website work is done from an Apple computer, so if you happen to be proficient with that, it will be a big pro.
In practical terms, as Coordinator, you will get access to a WSO forum (area coordinators only) called ‘AFG Connects’, where you can touch base with other members who do service in similar positions. It also brings you a step closer to our World Service Office, which regularly organises North-American Coordinator meetings on Zoom.
There are (Zoom) get-togethers with the other Coordinators in Ontario South. These meetings help our Ontario South Delegate and her team (who, together, form our ‘Area Executive’) stay in the loop with our comments and worries; they are also a nice opportunity to socialise with our peers in service. We are all spread out over the Ontario South area and Zoom has really helped us keep in touch.
Finally, there are many similarities between the tasks of the Group Records Coordinator and those of the website coordinator position. Therefore, we work closely together, always looking for ways to improve the process of change notifications. Our goal is to make the threshold as low as possible, so as to guarantee maximum accessibility. And sometimes remind each other that all things pass and letting go is a valuable skill to learn.
I have found that it is the most efficient to check on the website daily. This prevents work from piling up and -more importantly- helps keep the website content up-to-date and secure. Sometimes only 5 minutes are needed, sometimes more time is required. Updates for WordPress and plugins have the highest priority. We have tools in place to warn us about those per email, and to keep the website safe, they need to be taken care of as soon as possible, at all times.
Meetings and events: most frequently changed
The big all-time movers and shakers of the website, are updates for the pages dedicated to meetings and events. These are the two sections of the website that are most frequently consulted by large numbers of members and other visitors.
Creating a new event via the online form takes 10-20 minutes. Notifications per email that require retyping the information can take longer.
Updating a group listing via the online form takes 5-30 minutes, depending on the number of changes and the method of notification. Using the online form is preferred and most efficient. Updating any listing also includes updating the District Meeting lists via an off-website database tool. The Covid-pandemic has resulted in more frequent meeting changes, with an average of 2-5 notifications per day. Some pertain to changes in service positions, some to actual changes in meeting details. When we leave this health crisis behind, I expect the numbers to be lower. I have not had the privilege of experiencing a ‘normal’ year yet though, because I began maintaining the website at the start of Covid.
General website content
The rest of the website content (67 of 70 pages) is more or less static. Changing an existing article is no different from editing a document in Word. It does not require a deep-dive in technology. Creating completely new content is a bigger effort, especially if navigation menus need to be adjusted. But it is certainly not rocket science.
Reporting & Analysis
As Coordinator, we are expected to write regular (short) reports per year. These reports are for the Area Executive team, AWSC, Assembly and Open Lines and usually these reports will show the visitor numbers for the website. These come from Google Analytics, an automated online tool. You have probably seen some of these reports in one way or the other.
Contact me, if you are interested!
If all of this peaks your interest, you may be a candidate for this position at the end of 2023, when elections are held for a new Ontario South Executive team. The new delegate may invite you to be the next website coordinator… Or maybe you are already chomping at the bit. Contact me, so that we can make plans!
Nicky D, Acting Ontario South website coordinator
A new area position: Technology Coordinator
If the website administration is not your preference, but you do want to find out if you would be a good fit for the new position of Technology Coordinator, have a look at Section 2b of the Area Policy Manual(APM) in the ‘For Members’ section. You will find a list of envisioned tasks for this new Coordinator position, that the new Delegate will be looking to fill for after the elections at Assembly. Click the link below to open the APM page: