Website for Community Engagement

I’ve been asked to help with a website to encourage a local community to interact on a wide range of issues and I’m curious to get some feedback from people on what might be good ways to encourage community involvement.

Obviously, the site could be set up with forums, or it could just be updated regularly with topical articles which people are encouraged to comment on and discuss, but I’m wondering about some more “outside the box” ideas. Are there any ideas you have that might be different yet interesting or things you’ve seen on other websites that might be worth looking into?

What about a facebook group? I feel like dedicated forums are on the way out…

There is a website out there called Nextdoor in some communities. It’s like a community bulletin board. In the one I’m in, there are posts about lost or found pets, posts seeking recommendations for snow shoveling, child care, plumbing, maid service, handymen, posts offering the same stuff, posts advertising and seeking used baby stuff, posts about suspicious people in the neighborhood, posts from the local police station about crime in the neighborhood, people bitching about neighborhood activities like not picking up after dogs and not shoveling, posts bitching about racism in the previous post, and requests to borrow things like a staple gun. (The requester offered to leave her chihuahua as collateral while she borrowed it.)

My address etc. is visible only to the people in my neighborhood, but I can see posts from all adjacent neighborhoods. It’s kind of neat in a way–like if there is an unexplained really loud noise, someone will get on there and either explain it or question it. It’s also another way to waste time on the internet, like I needed that.

This seems to be a national thing but I have no idea if it’s available everywhere, because when I google “” I get the one I’m already signed up at.

I like/use Nextdoor as well. It recently made its way into my neighborhood and I feel a little more connected. Stuff for sale, discussion of cable rates, childcare, etc.

I’m also on my local Nextdoor site (and not on Facebook, although my neighborhood association also has a FB page). It’s a great place to post lost pet stuff, crime (car break-ins), garage sales, block parties. Very helpful and informative. Members can invite neighbors to join through the site. And mine asks people to verify that these individuals actually live in the neighborhood. Not sure how the “neighborhood” is defined in other cities, i.e., how many zip codes. In this city the neighborhoods are clearly defined, well-known, and they all have names.

Checkout ‘Goodpin’ !