DotComUnity is a newly developed website that was launched nationally in February 2010. It aims to provide a one-stop online resource and directory of community services, care information and social interactivity for adults and children with a learning or physical disability within local communities throughout the UK.
A registered, not-for-profit initiative, the website is useful in that it allows users to feedback on services. So, for example, if an individual uses a particular community service listed on the site, they can post a comment and rate their overall experience by tagging it as positive, neutral or negative.
The resource brings together information on services nationwide into one central location online. From the homepage, users can click on any area of the UK map or select a county, which will take them to listings for services specific to that region.
Standard information provided for each region includes community services and information directory, a member's area, events and activities, and community news.
The community services area provides information on social and community activities, housing and supported living, healthcare and personal care, employment, and legal/financial services, as well as providing links to helpful umbrella organisations. Listings range from art, crafts, music clubs and social clubs, educational institutions and employment opportunities, to providers of medical advice, accommodation, and voluntary care and support services.
Helpful features of the service listings include embedded Google calendars, with details of location, as well as summaries of services, costs and full contact details, including web links.
DotComUnity encourages individual service providers and organisations to add local events and activities for their region. Although it is a service that shows the potential to become a key resource for those with learning or physical disabilities, the content is currently patchy and funded through advertising and sponsorship. It will be interesting to see if the model is sustainable.
Visit the website: DotComUnity