Here To BiteSize PLUS

Happy Friday all…..!

Just a little hello to tell you all about our up and coming BiteSize plus opportunities here at Here To.

Having listened to you all over the course of some of our recent Pop-Ups and events we have learned of many people interested in extending their Islington contributions from ‘one offs’ to giving of more hours to longer lasting opportunities.

Thus…. Here To BiteSize PLUS is born.

Sharing and supporting through skills swapping.

‘Sharing and supporting one another through skills swapping’

Here To BiteSize PLUS will act as a specific skills matching brokerage. Pairing skilled residents up with projects in need of their super special skills and so on. Those offering their skilful services to Here To will benefit from in house training by leading Isledon youth engagement practitioners, as well as references and recommendations from Here To upon completion.

Volunteers engaging with Here To BiteSize PLUS will offer a few hours at a time, perhaps once a week, perhaps once a fortnight perhaps once  a month for some spectacular session they think they could run, using skills from their professions, passions and life long learning.

The joy of committing just that little bit more time to supporting our young people and the community is that you get to start to see some of the results, your skills being passed on, manifesting in front of you in the actions of others.

Our first exciting recruitment drive for Here To BiteSize PLUS will be for our latest youth hub, Rose Bowl. We are seeking skilful souls in areas such as Arts and Crafts, Nature Play, Creative Writing, Cooking, Hair and Beauty/Nail Art and people simply willing to impart some of their oodles of acquired knowledge on our young people in a home work club, helping with reading and writing and supporting studies. In becoming a Youth Engagement  Volunteer at our Youth Hub you will work alongside our Youth Support Workers to create a nurturing and supportive environment that enriches, educates and inspires our young people. As a Here To Youth Engagement Support Worker you will act as a positive role model to all the young people who access our services, supporting positive activities and play.

http://islington.hereto.org/projects/488

Basically if you have some skills (which lets face it…YOU ALL DO) and a genuine interest in supporting positive progression of young people….. then we want to hear from you! Get in touch and get involved.

Have a good weekend everybody.

Sinéad

We’re Here To… reveal new website features

To help celebrate our 1st birthday (along with the bash at Islington Town Hall), we were really keen to action some of the rich feedback we’ve had from the community over the last year by making some improvements to the Here To website.

Here’s a summary of what’s changed!

A clearer pathway through the website

Screen Shot 2014-02-12 at 12.42.09

For starters, our homepage is looking quite different: we’ve made it clearer what we’re Here To do and we’ve created 2 distinct pathways for website visitors in terms of content. So, when you visit the Here To website, you’re either Here To find a project or create a project, and that then takes you off to the right information for you.

Match me to a project

blog

Until recently, people who live, work or play in Islington could only sign up to opportunities by selecting one that interests them and clicking on a day that they’re free to get involved.

But as our portfolio of projects is ever-changing, website visitors may not always find exactly what they’re looking for, or they may have missed something really appropriate for them amongst all the choice.

To resolve this, we’ve created a new ‘Match me to a project’ function on the homepage!

After submitting a few details about what sort of local project they’re looking to join up to, this information then comes through to the Here To team.

blog2

We can then send personal project recommendations to people via email, as and when appropriate opportunities come up. This will save people time searching for opportunities and will help them to use their free time better more quickly.

blog3

New dashboards for helpers to manage their projects

blog4

Like organisations, local people now also have a dashboard that they can log into where they can manage the projects they’ve enquired to and leave feedback to organisations and the Here To team as to how it’s going.

The ability for helpers to submit feedback feedback will enable the Here To team to help them meet their personal goals more quickly and enable organisations to see how they can better meet the preferences of the people they’re trying to engage with.

 A new design for project header images

blog5

For organisations, we’re changed the image uploader settings so that images are displayed in their full glory on the opportunity page – that means no more red box covering a third of your picture.

A new hub of information for organisations

blog6

We’ve also made some changes to the FAQ page to make it more of a hub of information for organisations. We’ll be updating this information soon but in the meanwhile you can now download our latest version of our toolkit.

If you have any questions or feedback related to the new website changes, please do get in touch: call us on 0203 475 3825 or drop an email to hello@hereto.org 

If you’re interested in giving more detailed thoughts and fancy getting a few perks for yourself too, you can sign up to become a Here To website testing Wizard!

Here To… share what happened at the Photography How To

Yesterday evening saw the coming and going of Here To’s first ever photography workshop at Platform.

photo (1)

Facilitated by Nena – an Angel based professional photographer, graphic designer, Pilates teacher and Here To Wizard – the session covered digital camera basics (camera functions, focusing, pixel and resolution), setting up the camera, framing the image (composition, the Rule of Thirds and ‘thinking in colour’) and taking a picture (portrait and group photography, and capturing events).

Attendees included representatives from the London Canal MuseumFinsbury Park Community HubClidiveLondon Metropolitan University and the Turkish Education Group, and the common challenge experienced by those present was capturing events and activities in a way that excites people and motivates them to join in.

photo (2)

Key takeaways

We covered a lot of concepts at the first session, but here are 5 key points to remember that can make a difference to your photography right now:

Take time to consider your composition: what are you taking a picture of and why? How do you want others to feel when they view it?

Lighting is crucial: a quick way to improve the quality of your pictures is to ensure light is shining onto your subject, rather than behind it

Stand your ground: lean against walls, use your elbows, kneel down or stand on a chair to try new ways to steady your shot. And don’t forget to hold your breath when taking your picture!

Rules are there to be broken: concepts like the Rule of Thirds are very helpful, but there are exceptions. So remember to keep an experimental approach and to take lots of pictures

Every time you edit or crop an image, you’re reducing its quality: Nena will cover this more in the next session. Her advice was to try and crop your image as much as you can in the viewfinder before you take the photo, rather than relying on editing it afterwards

IMG_5176 (1)

Why we’re Here To run photography workshops

We’re running these FREE photography sessions in direct response to feedback from Here To users: that more help taking, selecting and cropping images for the Here To website would be really useful.

This is because photography is a really important aspect of the Here To website, and each opportunity is accompanied by a beautiful and relevant photo to excite residents about the project on offer.

photo (4)

Interested in joining us?

We have 2 more sessions left in the series for 2013. Each session takes place 4-6pm on a Monday at Platform.

* Session 2 – How to make the best of your photo – 25 Nov

The second session will be very computer-based and will explore how to use image manipulation software, such as Photoshop, to make the very best of the photos you have taken in session 1 or that you have brought with you. Nena will go through basic tools and techniques common to most photo editing software: selecting, cropping, contrast, exposure, colour balance and sharpening.

* Session 3 – Using mobile phones to take pictures – 9 Dec

As most of us carry one around in our pockets, this session is devoted to taking great pictures on mobile phones and preparing these photos for use on the web.

How to book

To book yourself or a team member onto a session, please RSVP by emailing Katherine, the Here To Manager, at katherine@hereto.org.

IMG_5172a (1)

Please include the session(s) you would like to attend and a contact name, phone number and email address.

This is a great chance for you and your organisation to get a photography skills boost for free, so we hope you can join us. These sorts of sessions and courses led by professional photographers usually cost hundreds of pounds!