Websites for the Greater Good: Non-Profits on WordPress.com
All kinds of organizations make their home on WordPress.com: small businesses, municipalities, religious organizations, schools, community groups. We also provide an online HQ for quite a few non-profits, from the global to the hyperlocal. They turn to WordPress.com for an easy-to-use, low cost solution that gets them an effective web presence without diverting thousands of dollars from their missions: helping others.
Here are just a few of the organizations that call WordPress.com home, and some of the ways they’ve used WordPress.com to create compelling sites that tell their stories and engage their supporters — nearly all for little or no cost:
Girls’ Globe is a Sweden-based non-profit that connects individuals and organizations dedicated to the rights, health, and empowerment of women and girls.
The site creates a space for bloggers and non-profits to share stories of their challenges and successes. Each of those stories becomes a learning experience for women’s rights advocates, giving them a new tool, suggesting an effective strategy for advancing girls’ rights, and providing international exposure.
Girls’ Globe uses the Oxygen theme, taking advantage of its post slider to create a colorful, graphic homepage that showcases the site’s most powerful stories. A custom menu guides visitors both to topical content and to pages critical for any non-profit: About, Partners, and Donate, where embedded PayPal buttons let visitors easily support the organization using either US dollars or Swedish krona.
We found many literacy organizations on WordPress.com — fitting, for a platform that’s about writing and reading great content. Among them is Turning Pages, a South Carolina non-profit offering adult literacy and math classes and tutoring:
Turning Pages relies on the Confit theme, originally designed for restaurants but perfect for creating websites with focused, easily navigable home pages. Their mission is front and center, and the home page also makes important information like address and office hours, a contact form, and a donate button accessible with no further clicking. In the sidebar, a custom menu lets potential volunteers and adults seeking assistance find relevant information easily. (If you’re interested in building a website with a home page rather than a blog, as Turning Pages has, check out our home page tutorial.)
Confit is designed for a large custom background image, and Turning Pages has chosen a panoramic shot of the Congaree River bridge, a Columbia landmark. It adds visual interest and emphasizes that this is a community-focused organization while not distracting from the important content on the page — a perfect double-duty background.
Tuning Pages isn’t the only organization that saw the potential in the Confit theme — the Vida Vegan Conference is also using it to share information about its upcoming gala, benefitting a chimpanzee sanctuary.
When the world first became aware of the atrocities committed in Uganda by Joseph Kony and the Lord’s Resistance Army, sending footage of Kony viral, Invisible Children was one of the main drivers behind the campaign. A California-based non-profit, Invisible Children is dedicated to ending the use and abuse of child soldiers in Africa, and their online component is powered by WordPress.com VIP:
Invisible Children is packed with information, from an interactive crisis tracker that lets visitors zoom in to learn more about specific incidents across Africa to a lobbying sign-up form and Congressional calendar for would-be activists. Compelling video and data help them make the case for their work, and the site provides ample opportunity for interested visitors to get involved, from simply making a donation to attending an event to applying for a job.
You might not think that a theme called Fruit Shake featuring bananas in its header would be a good foundation for a non-profit website — but then, you haven’t seen the Metro Council for Teen Potential:
Based in Rochester, New York, The Metro Council is a community youth support organization offering health and skills education, mentoring, and leadership training to young people in the greater Rochester area. Using Fruit Shake, they’ve created a simple, clean site. A front-and-center mission statement and bold photos of the teens it works with give visitors an immediate sense of what the organization does, and the navigation options in the sidebar make it easy to sift through the site’s options.
From animal welfare organizations to museums and municipal organizations to scholarship funds to community groups distributing food and clothing to the homeless and beyond, non-profits use WordPress.com to get their word out about their missions, attract volunteers, fundraise, and organize events, all in the name of the greater good. We’re proud to give them a platform that helps them create change.