Monday, April 26, 2010

Connecting, A-twitter?

At the 2010 Southwest Cluster Conference I attended a workshop on non profits getting the most out of web 2.0, and heard some startling facts! Here at Texas HIPPY we're trying our best to get connected on the web...please join, promote, comment or view us online in whatever formats you use!

WEB 2.0:

1. Since April 2009, Twitter has been receiving around 20 million unique visitors each month - so far I've only tweeted about 50 times, follow me

2. Flickr hosts more than 3.6 billion images, we have about 200 pictures, check them out 

3. Close to 20 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute, we haven't done this but just purchased a Flip Camera, which I saw demonstrated at the workshop, here, (bad video alert!). Prepare for some GOOD HIPPY videos in the future! 

4. The average US internet user spends an estimated 68 hours a week online, both at home and at work. (this was the startling fact, I hope we still have time as a society to talk to our families, walk our dogs, tend our gardens and read to our children...)

5. Facebook has more than 400 million active users, with over half of them logging in daily!!!! We're working on our facebook presence, figuring out the different ways to use causes, fan pages, groups, company pages, etc. For now you can join the HIPPY Texas Group page on Facebook ~ we need a wonderful volunteer to help us work on our presence there!!!

6. I've also joined Linked In, a professional social networking platform, please join me there!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

El Paso Partnerships

At El Paso HIPPY community partnerships are the norm. Over 40 home visitors are each linked with one of 12 partner non-profit organizations in the community. Corporate and volunteer partnerships are also at work in El Paso. Recently they were adopted by El Paso Kickback whose annual tournament raised them $1,000 for literacy materials. Earlier this year, Toro Employees were recognized by the El Paso times for their Community work at the Christmas celebration at the YMCA on December 22nd.  The YMCA executive Director, Bill Coon offered Toro a place for the event and donated toys for the kids.Over 50 kids and 20 families were invited to the event. With the support of the Giving Program, Toro employees organized the event throughout the year by doing fund raisers. Guadalupe M. Arellano, United Way Director for Community Services said, “these are all the presents these kids might get this Christmas, you have impacted the lives of these children so much, thank you for serving our community.” Kids were amazed to see their presents and Santa with Elf.  

(pic shows Muriel Thomas Borders, left) being interviewed for the El Paso Kickball HIPPY fundraiser)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

1963 ~ A Big Year

I had the opportunity to visit HIPPY in Anniston Alabama recently. I flew into Birmingham on a Sunday and rented a car, faced with an open afternoon. I was so happy to find (thank you Birmingham Airport for the free wi-fi!) that there's a Civil Rights Museum in Birmingham and I spent a fascinating and emotionally exhausting afternoon there. I was born in 1963, right in the middle of the Civil Rights Movement, and the year of the Birmingham bombing that killed 4 little girls (in the church right across from the museum). How different a city is Birmingham today. Yes, there's always work yet to do, but in my birth-year Birmingham buses, hotels and restaurants were segregated. On that day, I sat at a restaurant with an integrated clientele of barbecue lovers. I know that Civil Rights is a lot more than sitting together at the same dining table, but it seemed to be a good sign. On returning home I was reminded of at least one good thing that came out of that tumultuous era -- AmeriCorps VISTA which is 45 this year. Our HIPPY*VISTA program focuses on increasing support, funding and volunteerism in the communities HIPPY serves. This work was recently recognized by the Dallas Foundation who awarded us a grant.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010


(thanks to Kate Sumbler for the pic)

I recently went to a really great training by the DFW Chapter of the American Marketing Association on hosting effective events. I've been thinking about having a HIPPY event for a while but have been hesitant because of the nightmare stories out there about how events suck up all your time away from your core mission. And yet...there's an attraction to events too...gaining visibility, raising funds and the possibility of providing information to a greater audience of parents and young children. And so, there is hatching a possible plan, which will be discussed with the board, advisors, site staff and other collaborators...and maybe, am thinking May 2011 (yeah, that far out in advance!) maybe...we'll have a HIPPY event. Let me know what YOU think!