Web page contest to help local agency

May 25, 1997


Staff Writer

Consider it cyberspace with a social conscience.

That's what the Washington County Community Action Council is hoping to accomplish by sponsoring a contest for area residents to design a World Wide Web home page for the agency, set to debut by fall.

The agency, which provides financial assistance and other services to needy and homeless people in the county, sees the Internet as a means to promote its activities and its continuing need for support.

"It's very exciting," said Glenda Helman, the agency's director of services.

She said the agency realized the need for an Internet presence earlier this year when CAC Director Cheryl Walkley attended a seminar on World Wide Web possibilities for human services organizations.


"We had a chance to see how advantageous it could be," Helman said.

In addition to providing basic information about the CAC, a web page could also be used to help raise much-needed funds and attract volunteers like drivers for Meals on Wheels.

"We saw the whole gamut of opportunities there," Helman said.

At about the same time the organization was approached with the contest idea from Clint Wiley, owner of New Frontiers Internet Services in Hagerstown and the husband of a CAC employee.

Wiley said the contest could attract a variety of ideas from local people who have dabbled in web design.

"We want people to have fun with it," he said.

He said a $20 entry fee will make sure that people who are interested in designing a page for the CAC are serious. Proceeds from the fee, after expenses, will be donated to the agency, Wiley said. The CAC is also trying to sell sponsorships for the contest.

"It's going to provide a nice benefit," he said.

A panel of judges will select a winner, who will have the choice of free computer software or a year of free Internet service, Wiley said.

The contest is open to all amateur web page designers. Professional designers are not permitted. Applications are now available and anyone interested in participating in the contest can call New Frontiers at 301-791-3800.

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