City officials yesterday unveiled a new social networking site called Community Link during a kickoff presentation at the Fayetteville Public Library.
Described as “an innovative, online resource for community-wide engagement, collaboration, innovation and volunteer management,” Community Link includes a calendar of events, city announcements, volunteer opportunities and plenty of links and helpful information.
Built on the popular WordPress publishing platform, Community Link includes the option to sign up for an account to be able to post information or leave comments.
A host of speakers explained their excitement for Community Link Tuesday morning including Mayor Lioneld Jordan who noted Fayetteville’s consistent commitment to volunteerism. Jordan said more than 20,000 Fayetteville residents donated over half a million volunteer hours last year.
“There are always volunteer opportunities that we have here in our city,” said parks and recreation director Connie Edmonston. “Community Link will help bring people together for fun in a way that benefits the entire city.” Coaching youth sports teams, cleaning parks, becoming a Trail Trekker and volunteering at the Fayetteville Animal Shelter are some of the opportunities Edmonston said are always available.
In 2010, residents logged nearly 16,000 volunteer hours for the parks department. Edmonston said that time amounts to over $320,000 in savings to the city.
“We already have a tremendous volunteer community,” said Fayetteville community outreach coordinator Julie McQuade. “I think we have created a new tool to make the entire community more innovative and to find a new dimension of performance.”
Other speakers during the presentation included:
Marilyn Heifner – Director of the Convention and Visitors Bureau
Laura Speer – Fayetteville Public Library Director of Library Services
Steve Clark – President of the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce
Sherri Napier – Director of the Fayetteville Senior Center
Sonia Gutiérrez – Founder and Executive Director of the New Design School
Susan Norton – Chief Information Officer of the Fayetteville Public Schools
Mireya Reith – Executive Director of the Arkansas United Community Coalition and member of the Arkansas Board of Education