Atlantic Canada Cycling
Interactivity: At the heart of success in cyberspace
There are no real recipes for growth in cyberspace, but Atlantic Canada Cycling seems to have found the key to success. Through the Internet, this non-profit organization has raised its visibility across Canada while promoting cycling in the Atlantic provinces.
The interactive nature of its Web site is at the heart of the Atlantic Canada Cycling project's success. The organization began its promotional activities by holding a simple annual event. Because of the growing passion for cycling across Canada and the rising popularity of information technology and communications, the organizers decided to jump into the Internet era with both feet.
The organization's Web site is now booming, and it is growing thanks to user participation. The original content of the site was created entirely on the basis of questions and comments on cycling in Atlantic Canada submitted by volunteers and the public. Today, the site's interactive content depends on the participation of cyclists who share their favourite routes in the region. To deal with the large number of users, the organization has created a database containing maps and comments from all the users.
In addition, e-mail has become Atlantic Canada Cycling's preferred way to communicate quickly and effectively with key stakeholders, both volunteers and cyclists, from Canada and abroad.
Despite difficulties with certain Internet providers, the project coordinator, Gary Conrod, says that he is completely satisfied with the organization's Web site. "You have to let the people, including members, volunteers or other users, decide what they want on the site… Don't try to push your site too hard: give people the information they want, and they will come back… and keep coming back."
These best practices are an excellent way of sharing your experiences with other organizations in the voluntary sector. If you also have positive experiences on the use of technology in the voluntary sector, the IM-IT Secretariat will be pleased to post your stories. Please contact the IM/IT Secretariat by e-mail at email@example.com.