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Vi family network presentation cu 2011 v97 2003
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Vi family network presentation cu 2011 v97 2003

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Presentation for connecting up conference, Melbourne, 2011. How we used wordpress to connect families living with vision impairment.

Presentation for connecting up conference, Melbourne, 2011. How we used wordpress to connect families living with vision impairment.

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  • Multimedia designer at the royal institute for deaf and blind children’s renwick centre The vi family network is a web resource for parents of children with vision impairment. It has been set up by the Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Children (RIDBC), with support from Vision Australia, Guide Dogs NSW/ACT Guide Dogs Victoria, and CanDoforKids.
  • I will run through the history and background behind the network and how it evolved I will also talk about how we designed the site in response to parent feedback I will give you a sneak preview of the website – its not finished yet I will give a demonstration of the main features of the parents’ forum Also show the health professionals forum briefly, and how to join
  • The vi family network was created as a resource for families participating in the Australian childhood vision impairment register The register is a national database of childhood vision impairment in Australia. Families are invited to participate in the register through their eye health professional. By participating in the register, parents and carers provide detailed information about their child’s vision impairment and any other disabilities or health issues. This information will help target services and support for vision impaired children more effectively across the country. When the concept of the register was first evolving, a decision was made to offer some sort of support to families as an incentive to register and to inform them of available services It was decided that an online resource in the form of a website would provide an ideal solution, so that families from all over australia could access resources either from home or their local library where they would have access to a computer
  • So what did parents want? We obtained feedback from parents via phone interviews and a recent online survey. We discovered that: Many reported feeling isolated – not knowing who to ask for help. They felt they had few options for accessing support networks and limited opportunity to engage with other families in a similar situation. With some families being told after initial diagnosis that there is no cure for their child's eye disorder, many are left wondering about their child’s future and education needs Geographic isolation also limits access to services and resources even further, creating an additional barrier for some. In summary, They want to be able to contact other families with children with these rare eye conditions They want to offer and receive emotional support and advice through other families going through or who have been through a similar experience They want access to australian resources and services accessible and relevant to their needs So we set to work to create a web resource that would meet these needs.
  • The site was developed using Wordpress, which is an open source content management system most famously used to create blogs on the web. As it is a free website development tool, the only costs involved were web hosting and the domain name registration costs. The domain costs were $56 for 2 years, and as we already had our own webhosting account set up for other projects, there was no extra charge to add this website onto the existing account. Website contains: Information and a link to the register with access to details on how to take part Latest news on developments from the register, including numbers enrolled, and links to latest research reports Links to the parents forum, which i’ll talk about in a moment Oz-viskids, the kids club for all children on the register. This is under development, but we have teamed up with the producers of Livewire, which is the online network for kids living with illnesses and disabilities run through the starlight foundation, to enable vision impaired kids on the register to join this network. Still have a few issues to sort out. Information about our partners and links to websites and services provided. A large resources section. Here we have started creating a number of resources and links to information that will be of interest to families with vision impaired children. Some resources we have produced ourselves, and others are openly available on the internet. This will become a valuable part of the site, with the aim to provide an Australian focussed one stop shop for families to go to to find out where to go for help, access to support services, and useful information, including accessible events listings and so on.
  • Easy for users who just want a forum and social networking options without the frills Pick and choose components you want – we didn’t want groups yet so left that out, but a groups plugin is available – lots of plugins Can be used with your existing theme and wordpress install – no issues with compatibility can create easy summary of activity on your chosen wp page Great for non developers – you can use the built in colour pickers and options in the backend to link to your theme W3C compliant to AA standard good for accessibility. We chose larger text for forum and bold colours that linked with our overall site theme but had good contrast
  • The last point is the hardest – we need to get people involved and keep people interested, so with your help in letting people know about the vi family network we can build up a useful resource that will go some way towards bringing families closer together through sharing of experiences and knowledge within this community.
  • Transcript

    • 1.  
    • 2. About me
      • Curriculum Media Designer
      • Responsible for: graphic design, promotional media, e-newsletters, website design and updates, e-learning course delivery, digital video production and filming
      • Interest in online community building
    • 3. Overview of presentation
      • History
      • Planning through parent feedback
      • Tools for the job
      • Website overview
      • Feedback and future work
    • 4. The vi family network: History
      • Australian Childhood
      • Vision Impairment
      • Register
      • National Database of childhood vision impairment in Australia
      • A resource for families to access information and share experiences
      • Online solution
    • 5. Planning through parent feedback
      • Feeling isolated – who to ask?
      • Contact with other families
      • Emotional support with others who have been through the same experience
      • Access to Australian resources and service providers
    • 6. Tools for the job
      • Full CMS
      • Simple
      • Free
      • Open source
      • Stable
      • Large user base +25m
      • Millions of amazing plugins
    • 7. Website overview http://vifamilynetwork.org.au/
    • 8.  
    • 9.  
    • 10.  
    • 11.  
    • 12.  
    • 13.  
    • 14.  
    • 15.  
    • 16.  
    • 17.  
    • 18.  
    • 19. Customisations
      • Theme & design
      • Simple theme chosen - customised
      • Fast secure contact form
      • Theme my login
      • Members list
      Plugins used
    • 20. Cusomisations
      • Access
      • Theme switch reloaded
      • Wordpress access control
      • Google analyticator
      Plugins used
      • Vision Australia to help with full accessibility check.
    • 21. Customisations
      • Forum
      • Wordpress symposium
      • WP symposium forum
      • WP symposium mail
      • WP symposium members
      • WP symposium panel
      • WP symposium profile
      • WP symposium widgets
      Plugins used http://www.wpsymposium.com/
    • 22. WP Symposium benefits
      • Simple clean design, no unnecessary text and lists
      • Easily choose components of the social network
      • Use with standard WordPress installation and any WordPress theme
      • Easy embedding output of components on pages in any WP theme
      • Do not need to know anything about .css files and stylesheets
      • Design to W3C AA compliance
    • 23. WP Symposium drawbacks?
      • Still new – teething problems
      • buddypress much bigger and robust – good for larger networks
      • Symposium less extendable for developers – good for non developers
      • New plugins being developed – media libraries in April/May this year
    • 24. Ongoing work
      • Web accessibility testing
      • Add more resources
      • Get people engaging online!
        • Twitter updates
        • Email members for updates/reminders
        • Regular forum posts and ‘hot topics’
        • Encourage non-members to join
    • 25. Feedback so far
      • “ I am thrilled that you have made a site for parents to chat with one another, I live on kangaroo Island (SA) and it is hard to keep in touch with anyone, let alone meet parents with similar problems and challenges as ourselves”.
    • 26. Feedback so far
      • “ Thank you for giving us the opportunity to meet some other parents in similar situations and providing what I felt was the missing link in the care of my daughter, somewhere to get accurate helpful information, meet others, and to be kept updated on relevant issues from a reputable website. Well done!”
    • 27. Feedback so far
      • “ I am mother to an almost 4 year old who is vision impaired, and do feel that more of a parent network is needed desperately. The work by RIDBC, Guide Dogs and Vision Australia is wonderful.. but only another parent truly understands. I would really love to join the online forum, could you please let me know when it's up and running?”
    • 28. Finally
      • A useful resource that will go some way towards bringing families closer together through sharing of experiences and knowledge within the VI community.
    • 29. Contact Dr Teresa Williamson Curriculum Media Designer RIDBC Renwick Centre [email_address] Questions

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