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We’ve been talking to folks from some of the 350,000 congregations around the country and have been hearing that they’d like more coverage of IT resources for religious oriented charities on TechSoup. They’ve also told us about some great, but little-known online resources that explore faith-based IT like the pros and cons of the different church member management software packages and website content management systems for congregation websites. We thought we’d share that with you.
One of our best conversations was with Katherine Clark who is the state administrative secretary for the Church of God in Virginia. Her office provides resources, staff trainings, and coordinates state events for 200 churches around the state. Katherine told our Dulcey Bower that her churches use Microsoft Office for their email and documents, Dropbox to share files, and sundry web applications for online communications. She also said that they learn about new technology mostly by word of mouth throughout their church network. That’s not surprising since faith-based organizations are all about community.
I’ve been following the discussions on the Unitarian Universalist techie listserv and it’s a great information sharing group. Another is the ChurchMgmtSoftware listserv. Beth Ogilvie and Margy Levine Young from that community compiled some survey results from the group. Here’s what they found regarding church management software:
We hope you know that we’re always adding more donations to the TechSoup Landing Page for Faith-Based Organizations where you can find several product donations including ones from Microsoft, and most recently from Huddle and Mobile Beacon. Huddle is a web-based project management, document sharing and collaboration service. Mobile Beacon offers low-cost 4G mobile broadband devices to provide Internet connectivity pretty much anywhere you need it.
The just released Blackbaud Charitable Giving Report reveals that faith-based organizations are leaders in online fundraising with an 18 percent increase in 2013. That’s the highest adoption rate in the nonprofit sector. TechSoup donations in this area include eTapestry web-based software for fundraising and donor contact management, DonorPerfect’s online fundraising and donor management service, and for organizations interested in engaging younger people, Connect2give's discounted online services to collect donations and communicate with members via mobile devices and the mobile web.
Do you have any faith-based tech resources to add? Please log in to comment on this blog post.