Websites for Toastmasters districts (and their clubs)

Toastmasters districts have an opportunity to take advantage of the same software available here to run their own district websites and potentially offer to host websites on behalf of their clubs. Just as this website offers clubs a free website at an address like myclub.wp4toastmasters.com, a district could make a similar offer to its clubs to have a website that would be something like myclub.d6tm.org (using the example of District 6, which has its main website at www.d6tm.org).

What’s required is a WordPress server configured with the multisite option. By adding the RSVPMaker and RSVPMaker for Toastmasters plugins, you can enable club sites to have all the meeting role signup and member performance tracking features I’m showing off here. (See this listing for the rest of the plugins offered on wp4toastmasters.com.)

Multiple sites hosted under the WordPress for Toastmasters umbrella.
Multiple sites hosted under the WordPress for Toastmasters umbrella.

One advantage of gathering district and club websites together on the same server is that club officers who administer their own sites could also be granted more limited permissions on the district website, such as the ability to access members-only content or create draft blog posts for review by the district webmaster. Area and division leaders could be given their own sites to promote events such as Toastmasters Leadership Institute training. RSVPMaker provides general event management functions, including the ability to pay a fee via PayPal.

I started work on this software more than three years ago, as a project for my own home club, because I was frustrated by the limitations of the Free Toast Host platform most clubs use by default. Similarly, I think the toastmastersdistricts.org version of FTH places too many restrictions on what you can do with your district website. By building on WordPress, you can take advantage of the same software widely used by web marketers and by major publications like The New Yorker and the Atlantic Monthly.

I would be interested in talking with any district that is interested in exploring these possibilities. You can reach me at david@carrcommunications.com.

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