nonprofit resources

Why Haven’t You Joined? Nonprofits and NTEN

1 Comment 12 October 2009

At 09NTC with fellow NTEN member Rufina Fernandes of the NASSCOM Foundation

At 09NTC with fellow NTEN member Rufina Fernandes of the NASSCOM Foundation

I love NTEN. Really. It’s one of the most incredible group of people and information I have ever been part of.  And they didn’t pay me to say that. (Disclosure: I’m a NTEN member who participates, that’s all. Really.)

NTEN is the Nonprofit Technology Network. It says technology but the most important word is Network. NTEN is a true network of nonprofit professionals, organizations, consultants and technology experts. If you work at a nonprofit organization, or with nonprofits, this is the network for you. Technology can be overwhelming for both “non-techies,” people who specialize in technology, and everyone else; we know there’s so much more to learn.  NTEN makes it easy to learn.

Whenever I begin working with a nonprofit organization, I ask the people I’m working with if they are familiar with NTEN. If they aren’t, I suggest they join because the benefit to the nonprofit is tremendous, foremost being the support to nonprofits struggling with technological questions. Here’s why I recommend NTEN:

NTEN listens and helps

It’s a really generous organization. NTEN offers monthly membership Q&A sessions, an online NTEN member community to search for individuals, and incredibly helpful staff.

Webinars Galore

They offer incredible tech webinars on subjects from the truly geeky to the truly social. Members can access archived webinars, free of charge.

A fabulous annual conference, the Nonprofit Technology Conference (NTC)

This three-day conference is the place to meet and connect with your nonprofit colleagues, all kinds of technology service providers, and a range of consultants (like myself). The workshops are highly informative, and there is a plenty of time to network and connect. Last year, I attended sessions about podcasting, mobile fundraising, social media metrics, and amazing online campaigns, all of which I live-blogged. You can review some of the sessions I attended on the blog. They are all tagged “NTC09” and “NTC10” on this blog.

The 2010 NTC will be held April 8 – 10 in Atlanta, Georgia. NTEN has an open participation process for developing the conferences and workshop sessions. All of the session proposals are now up for public voting until October 16th. I am part of four different session proposals, which I wrote about in the prior post. (If you have a moment, please read the prior post and vote for my sessions.)

NTEN members rock!

They really do. Everyone that I have met through NTEN has been incredibly generous, and I continue to connect with them on Twitter, their blogs, Linkedin, and old-fashioned email. In fact, two people I met at last year’s NTEN conference collaborated with me to develop workshop sessions for this year’s conference. Others I met have offered knowledgeable advice, support and answers to questions of mine throughout the year.

These are some of the reasons that I think it’s important to be part of this community if you are a nonprofit. If you’ve joined NTEN, what do you get out of your membership?

If not, what’s stopping you from joining NTEN?



Debra Askanase is an experienced digital engagement strategist, non-profit executive, and community organizer. She works with mission-driven organizations to develop digital strategies and campaigns that engage, create trust, and move stakeholders to action. Debra speaks at conferences worldwide on the intersection of technology, social media, and nonprofit organizations.

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