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Our New Website

A picture of our new website designIt has been a few months in the making, but our new website is finally done. It’s not that our old website was bad, but we were looking for something a little fresher, more user friendly, and a way to more clearly communicate who we are and what we are doing. We think it turned out pretty nice. Besides a new overall look and feel, there are a lot of interesting aspects that we want to draw your attention to.

  1. Featured Information on the Home Page – When you visit our home page, the first area you’ll see is our featured information section.  Through big visual images we can highlight various important aspects of our ministry.  As of today, those areas are: Get Involved, Sponsor, Volunteer, Missions, and Donate.  However, as special events,  fundraisers, prayer requests, immediate needs, and other important items come up, we’ll be able to feature them prominently on our website.
  2. A Newly Designed Children Area – Our ministry is about children and we want to make it easy to learn about each one of them.  When you got to “The Children” you’ll see our children nicely laid out with some brief information on each one of them.  From here it’s easy to learn more about them, their individual stories, and see pictures.  Also on this main page, you’ll notice that when a child has a birthday in the current month, a “birthday ribbon” will pop up and highlight his or her birthday (you’ll have to wait until August when Edwin has his birthday to see this in action.)
  3. Write to the Children – As you learn more about each child, you’ll see there is a “Write Me” button.  Click the button and you’ll be able to send that child a message.  It’s a fast and fun way to communicate with our children!
  4. Get Involved – Now it’s even easier to see the ways you can get involved with Hope For Tomorrow.  By going to the Get Involved area of our website, you’ll see the main ways you can participate with information about each one.
  5. Volunteer – We’re very excited to announce that we are actively accepting applications for volunteers that want to come down and serve with us.  It could be for a month or a year (or anything in between of course) and all the information about how to do it is on the website.  You can also download our Volunteer Application Form and fill it out on your computer.
  6. Photos – We’ve redesigned the photos page so that it is always up to date with our latest Flickr photos.  But we’ve also included a section called Children’s Albums where you can see all the photos where a specific child appears!  Very cool!  And as always, you can click on a photo to see it bigger and then from there flip through the other pictures in the albums.

So those are a few of the improvements we’ve made to the website that we wanted to highlight.  Of course there is a lot more, especially a lot going on in the background, but that’s all geeky technical stuff that we won’t bore you with.

As with all new designs, there may be kinks we still have to work out.  If you find a broken link, or something doesn’t look quite right, please email me to let me know.  We want to make sure our website is the best experience for everyone.

We hope you enjoy our new website.  Please share it with others and leave a comment below to let us know your thoughts.

Come join our Christmas Party!

Christmas CardThis Thursday, December 17th, we will be celebrating Christmas with our children.  Unfortunately, even though we wanted to do the celebration on December 24th, like most Guatemalan’s, the majority of our staff will be with their respective families and won’t be there that date.  So since Christmas is such a family oriented event, we thought it was more important to celebrate with the entire staff than it was to celebrate on a particular date.

So this Thursday we will be doing our Christmas celebration with the children and more importantly, we will be bringing it to you live so you can watch all the action.  We plan on starting the event around 2:30 pm which is 3:30 pm EST, and you can come see the children as the open their presents that afternoon.

Before the presents we will be doing other activities such as games, reading about the birth of Christ, and the children are putting together something special as well.  Most likely we will bring the event to you in different parts, so if you come and we’re not broadcasting just wait and you should see something eventually.

Just come back here to the “updates” page and you’ll see the live video automatically.  You should also be able to comment on the video and we’ll see what you write.  We look forward to seeing you!

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New Sidebar Addition

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Since we are dedicated to keeping you up to date with all that is happening at the Children’s Home, I have just added a new section to the sidebar on the left called “What’s Going On”. This area shows the most recent photos that I take at the home but that aren’t really part of any activity or event. What’s amazing about all of this is that it is almost instant. When I’m at the home I take a picture with my iPhone, upload it right then and there to Flickr, and within seconds you can see the picture on the website.

Hovering over any picture will give you a description of what you are seeing, and clicking on any pictures will take you to our Flickr page where you can see the picture even bigger, comment, or download it for yourself. I hope this new addition will keep you even more up to date with all that is going on at Hope For Tomorrow Children’s Home.

We have Comments

No website/blog would be complete without the ability for the community of people that follow that site to comment on the different articles and express their opinions, feelings, or encouragement. So I have finally enabled comments on our website so that you too can leave your personal messages. It really is a great way to interact with a site and not only be an observer but also a participant.

At the end of each post you will see a “comments” link that will show you the number of comments that have been left so far. If you click on that link it will either bring up the comments (if there are some) with the “leave a comment” box at the bottom, or just the “leave a comment” box (if there are no comments). From here you can read the comments, reply to comments that have already been left, and of course add your own comments. There are some general fields to fill out like the nickname you want to appear on the comment, the email address you want replies to be sent to (this is totally optional), and the actual comment. You can also add pictures or your avatar. And of course this is all moderated by me to make sure the site stays clean and safe. So in the words of a famous Madonna song: “Express Yourself!”

Click on “Comments” below to see an example of some test comments.

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Hope For Tomorrow Children's Home
135 Lackawanna Rd.
Lexington, KY 40503
T: 859-276-6249
F: 859-276-5570