Now Edible Avondale SE1 has its own website, Facebook page, and Twitter account. Christina explains: “The Edible Avondale SE1 website was actually built for me by students from the local college as their end of year project. All I had to do was learn a bit about WordPress so I could update it, upload my own pictures, plug in my social media feeds and work out the analytics. It’s all easier than it sounds – honest! These things always sound bigger and scarier than they actually are.
“I’ve found Facebook and Twitter particularly useful because they allow me to update and evidence Edible Avondale’s work on the go from my smartphone. I’m still getting to grips with the smartphone itself, but it’s a great piece of equipment. That evidence is vital in securing future funding, and it gives me somewhere to point funders and stakeholders to showcase our achievements.
“The internet is also the best research tool there’s ever been. I spend a lot of time planning our next developments or activities, and there are all sorts of questions that crop up. Should we get a polytunnel or a greenhouse? Look it up online and the answers are all there, instantly. Comparisons are easy too, so I can make sure we’re getting the best deals.
“All in all, technology has given us the opportunity and the platform to get our name out there and raise our profile. It’s also helped us advertise the things we make – like bird boxes and wine rack holders – and it helps us recruit new volunteers for the project. We’d never be able to afford things like posters or leaflets to put up or drop round the estate, whereas a few tweets and a decent Facebook page are much cheaper and easier to achieve.
“Next on my list to learn about is LinkedIn, but things are really busy at Edible Avondale SE1 so it might be a little while before I get round to it! But that’s what’s great about learning online. I’m also planning to get some of our young volunteers to take ownership of the website and social media feeds. Now I know the basics I can oversee their activities, but they’re the digital experts, and I’ve found that a sense of ownership can really help them to thrive.”