Services of this On-The-Road  ministry
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Services Contents
  The Announcement
  Elaboration
  Some Ministries Served

The basic announcement to introduce this on-the-road ministry (generally via email) has been:

On-site Assistance with   Databases and Software   Development & Support  --
-- providing high quality professional services to Christian ministries / missions.

You receive  expert help with databases, donor systems, mailing lists, student records, registration systems and the other information management needs of your ministry.   This service comes alongside to help when you  are short of qualified staff,   lack time in your schedule   or   need the kind of assistance 40+ years of experience delivers.   In the process, we  evaluate ministry requirements,   plan & manage projects,   design, develop & deploy solutions,   and   train your staff in the efficient use of the resulting applications.

We will be on-site at your location to work intensively with you to build those solutions that fit your ministry-specific needs.   Your ministry's information is a major asset -- this focused investment will increase its value.

From those ministries that have an Information Technology budget, we request reimbursement for expenses and a per-day fee based on a ministry-minded sliding-scale.  For other qualified ministries, the costs can be reduced using funds from sponsors and donors. 

Since this is an  "On The Road"  service,  availability and travel expenses  are based upon your location compared to the location of the last ministry being served.  Please contact us soon  to be included in the current planning window -- this will assist us in being good stewards of both time and money.

For more information and to arrange for services, contact    David McQuoid  by email at
   

Please also advise other ministries in your area,   they could help share costs.

This service is provided through one of the following ministries – depending upon your circumstances:

        Tech Serve International of Greenbrier Arkansas is a non-profit Christian organization which mobilizes volunteers to provide hands-on services to Christian ministries around the world. Many of the projects include constructing churches, hospitals, clinics, orphanages and schools overseas.  They also provide telephone systems.
www.techserve.org

        Mission Builders International of Lakeside Montana is a non-profit Christian organization which mobilizes volunteers to encourage, support and work alongside front-line missionaries to build the Kingdom of God,  providing hands-on services to Christian ministries around the world that promote health, education and economic opportunities for hurting people.
www.missionbuilders.net


Supporting computers in ministries . . to bring people to Christ.

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Elaboration

A core area of ministry information activity centers on "the database":   donor systems,   volunteer data,   project records,   mailing lists,   student records,   registration systems, event and outreach history,   and the other information collections of the ministry.   Using the appropriate software to gather, organize and report this information enables the ministry to better serve its constituents and to perform its mission in the world.

This on-site service includes evaluation, design, implementation and training that includes  best practices,  business operations,  knowing your constituents,  managing commitments, as well as the more obvious implementation issues surrounding databases and software development.

Each Christian ministry or mission requires solutions that fit their ministry-specific needs,  this means someone needs to work face-to-face and side-by-side with them to build those solutions.   The use of an RV facilitates staying days, weeks, and even months when necessary.

How do you determine how long to stay?  Usually the first working visit to a ministry lasts about two or three weeks,  however  I will stay as long as I am being productive.

Frequently the work may deal with customized software, not just out-of-the-box or off-the-shelf packages.  Even when the pre-packaged products are the best solution, out-of-the-box packages require customization and training.

Sometimes it is necessary to 'synchronize' data between two software packages (because they are best solutions in their specific areas, not replaceable by a single reasonably-priced tool).  This data coordination often requires special programming to "reach behind" the interfaces of the products to directly manipulate the stored data. 

Additional areas include:   best practices (both business and technology) ... business operations ... knowing your constituents ... managing commitments ... data checking ... merging into a single database where practical (for consistency and to minimize duplicate efforts)    ...  reporting across multiple databases ... and others that arise specific to the ministry being served.

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Some project outlines:

Looking at only a very small portion of the information involved in each of these areas should still give you a sense of what a project may entail.

Basic contact management = names, addresses, phones, emails and so on.
This begins with developing/applying a "taxonomy" that identifies which constituents fall into various audiences, interest groups, or have particular relationships with the ministry.
Of course, there need to be multiple addresses (home, office, etc) for each constituent; with seasonal addressing identified where needed.  Correspondingly there need to be multiple phone numbers, email addresses, web-site-urls and so on.
Each constituent should be able to appear on multiple mailing-lists, some with expiration dates.
Notes of conversations past,  and reminders of promises to the constituents need to be included.

For recruiting and deploying volunteers = add
Lists of skills (with degree of ability) for each volunteer.  Dates the volunteer is typically available that are automatically refreshed each year.
Since many ministries include overseas assignments,  record the languages spoken by the volunteers, along with an indication of fluency. 
Many volunteers have express geographical preferences to be tracked / considered during assignments.
As part of the ministry accountability, as well as recognizing active volunteers, records of the teams that have served on specific projects (which maps back to individuals serving).

For short-term missions / outreaches = add
Participation history records of outreaches and/or events.
Evaluation reports, feedback expressed, and other "essay" materials.

For training centers = add
Class records, exam scores, grades; student transcripts; housing, and more.

Also some ministries need to track inventory = add
Inventory units-of-measure, shipping-units, sources and disposition entities,  and of course - - the actual inventory history.

In addition to the information data elements, there are several significant user-interface tools that can be built to facilitate locating and/or reporting on the information desired for a particular purpose - - without requiring a programmer to build a new report or screen form.

 

Some ministries are migrating to another vendor-supplied database/software package and need to
a.  take this opportunity to re-design or re-focus their business processes,
b.  pre-screen their current data for consistency / validity,  then
c.  map the various parts of the data from the old system to the new system structure and designated code values.
This usually requires a large number of special purpose queries or reports to identify questionable data combinations,  look for missing data elements/values,  locate duplicates of various kinds,  and pre-assign new taxonomy codes to existing constituents.

 

These are just a few ideas of what a Database and Software Development project may involve.

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Some ministries served:

World Radio Network --  McAllen  TX
International Messengers --  Clear Lake  IA
Hospitals of Hope --  Wichita  KS
Giving Children Hope --  Buena Park  CA
New Life Ranch --  Colcord  OK
Orphan Relief and Rescue --  Garden Valley  TX
Mission Direct -- Lindale  TX
Sharing International  --  Garden Valley  TX
Child Evangelism Fellowship  --  Warrenton  MO
YWAM Coatesville  --  Coatesville  PA
YWAM Madison --  Madison WI
Young Life, Washington Family Ranch (Wildhorse ) -- Antelope  OR
Operation Mobilization --  Atlanta  GA
The Seed Company (Wycliffe) --  Arlington  TX
Gleanings For The Hungry --  Sultana  CA
GO Conference --  Colorado Springs  CO
Western Frontiers --  Meeteetse  WY
YWAM Northwoods --  Weyerhaeuser  WI
HCJB Global (World Radio) Technology Center -- Elkhart  IN
Wears Valley Ranch --  Wears Valley TN
YWAM Orlando --  Orlando FL 
Hope Force International --  Nashville  TN 
Village Missions --  Dallas  OR 
YWAM Salem --  Salem  OR 
Hard Hats for Christ --  Kelso  WA 
Mission Builders International --  Lakeside  MT 
YWAM Montana -- Lakeside  MT (construction) 
Restoration Ministries International --  Denver  CO 
Messenger International --  Palmer Lake  CO 
Avant Ministries --  Kansas City  MO 
New Tribes Mission Training & MK Centers --  Camdenton  MO 
YWAM Nashville --  Adams  TN 
Tech Serve International --  Greenbrier AR  
UIM-Aviation --  Tucson  AZ 
Gospel Recordings Network --  Temecula  CA 
New Horizons Youth Ministry --  Marion  IN 
International Needs --  Lynden  WA 
OC International --  Colorado Springs  CO 
Mothers of Pre-Schoolers (MOPS) -- Denver  CO
International Students, Inc --  Colorado Springs  CO 
Habitat for Humanity --  Van Wert  OH (construction)
 

For some ministries there have been multiple visits - - often to add new functionality or respond to new needs.  Several have had some follow-up work done remotely.

As you can see, the kinds of ministry vary.  Some are helps ministries, some sending missions, some are youth ministries, ...

To view a map of some specific ministry locations,  use this link:   OTR Ministry Locations Map (small size)     (medium)     (large)     (extra large)


This page last edited: 20 March 2012