Operation Overnight Builds Websites for Nonprofits
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - Dozens of volunteers spent 24 hours in front of their computers making dreams come true for local non-profits. Operation Overnight is an effort to build websites for organizations who otherwise wouldn’t have a strong online presence for the people they serve. “Nobody likes to give up their sleep. But doing it for some of the great non-profits in the Cedar Rapids area is a wonderful thing,” says Bill Basler, Director of Creative Services at Geonetric. This is the second year volunteers at Geonetric have come together to write, design, code and host non-profit websites. Go Daddy supplies the web domain.
Five organizations were selected for this year’s event from a pool of applicants. This year, the non-profits are Jane Boyd Community House, the Oak Hill Cemetery Association, the Cedar Rapids Science Center, the Wheelchair Ramp Accessibility Program and Youthport, formerly known as the Child Family Community Collaboration. “We had a lot of fun working for four different non-profits last year and I expect that this year,” said Basler. “We've got five great local non-profits and we're going to do some great things for them."
From 8:00AM Thursday to 8:00AM Friday, the organizations eagerly awaited their new websites. The Oak Hill Cemetery Association is proud of its 150 year history in Cedar Rapids. It was recently added to the National Register of Historic Places. Many historical figures are buried there, including 26 mayors and the business leaders behind Quaker Oats and the Sinclair plant. “We realized that it is definitely not a modern type cemetery, since it's older, and we want to bring it into modern times with the technology and everything,” says Cemetery Superintendent, Carl Thoresen.
A new website will provide access to historical records, maps and information about burial options at Oak Hill. “It will allow families locally or all over the country to log into Oakhill Cemetery and get historical information and just general information about the business,” says Thoreson.
The Wheelchair Ramp Accessibility Program or WRAP helps wheelchair bound individuals stay in their homes. The group had a basic website, but couldn’t afford to do much more. “We kind of exist on our partners' good will and donations and so to go and ask for design money for a website build was something we didn't think we could do when we had people in the community needing home access,” says WRAP President Angela Burns, who was thrilled to be picked for Operation Overnight. “We’re very very blessed. We’re very grateful.”
Here are the links to the five new websites:
What's On KCRG