We have just completed a great year, which is summarized in SDM’s 2023 Annual Report. Read on as we tell you how it went.
Year in Review
SDM opened our doors in July 2016. We moved to our new shop in February 2021.
We have 4 full time and 3 part time employees. While each person’s knowledge is a little different, we teach and learn from each other every day, and try to build and share, a broad range of expertise.
We have helped thousands of people, charging nothing for our services. The topics we teach range from beginners learning computer basics, word processing and how to download and upload, to far more complex issues like website creation, photo editing and social media.
We help people on their phones, tablets and computers, and also on our equipment when they don’t have their own.
Visit our website at sdmfoundation.org for more information.
We keep many analytics about the services we provide. The above graphic shows some of them. Every staff member at SDM helps clients in appointments and lessons. In addition, there are many other activities that take a substantial amount of our time, such as creating content in the form of videos, blog posts, newsletter and social media. We run a Small Business Tech Support on Facebook, and we create specific lessons on those topics.
We have seen improvement across all metrics. The increase in appointments per day (up from 14+ per day in 2022 to 16+ per day), and appointment hours (up from 3200 hours in 2022 to more than 4000 hours) being most notable.
We feel this, because we see how busy our calendar is, but it is good to add it up and know just how successful our year has been!
We have reached and engaged with more people across our channels, both social (Facebook followers are up 88 and Instagram is up by 74) and website (our page views increased to 28,960 from 27,200 in 2022). Our Small Business Tech Support Facebook Group is also growing, up by 21 members.
Our most important goal for 2024 is to continue to provide high quality service, and to expand the number of people we can reach, and the number of topics we can teach.
Who We Reach
Nearly every week we hear that another organization is giving our information to their own clients. There is a strong need for help with technology. Many of those organizations help immigrants or people who are unemployed. Senior centers in the area send elders who want to learn to use their devices, or sign up for email, or start online banking. We have even heard that some local college professors have listed SDM as a source for help.
The range of topics that we teach is endless. The examples above are just a few that we experienced in a recent week. From email problems, to Lego robotics, to applying for jobs online, we are available to help anyone who is trying to learn.
Growing Need for Support
More than 7 years in, we are able to continue providing our services free of charge. It is our goal to follow this model for many, many years to come. In order to do that, we are working to expand our acceptance of donations and grants. 2023 was the first year of this effort, and the donations we received exceeded our expectations. We also received our first grant in 2023. Thank you to the Melrose Cooperative Bank Charitable Foundation, a Charitable Legacy of Melrose Cooperative Bank. That grant allowed us to expand our summer lessons for kids, which was wildly successful! We hope 2024 continues this trend.