I Made a Site! SOS-AnimalRescue.org

Evident by the website you’re reading this from now, it’s clear that I dabble with WordPress websites. My first website class at Point Park laid the foundation not only for my portfolio site, but for other websites I’ve worked on thus far.  These skills have undoubtedly helped me throughout my career, not to mention it’s fun.

One of my best friends, Jess, approached me in the fall about her aunt’s cat rescue organization, and that she was looking to create a website. I jumped at the chance; why not do something to help sweet little kitties get adopted?

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The site has been up and running (and working) for a couple weeks. Check out my handiwork and adorable cats at sos-animalrescue.org. While it’s not the most amazing site ever, obviously, it does everything we need it to, and it looks way better than numerous other shelter sites I’ve seen. Dana, who runs the rescue out of her home, does a great job on social media. Because she’s so busy, I wanted to do my best to automate as much as possible. For instance,  since Dana already posts pets’ profiles on AdoptAPet.com, I hoped there was a plugin that could sync those profiles so she wouldn’t have to input information twice. Luckily, one simple plugin did the trick. Thank you, Chris Hardie.

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We were originally going to use the WordPress posts function as cat profiles, but since that was now taken care of by linking with AdoptAPet, we moved it to news pages. I taught Dana and Jess how to create posts on their own, and how to tag and categorize everything from events to success stories. I also created the featured pet sidebar at their request, which was really simple to do with categories.

While this site isn’t the most glamorous, and there are still a few kinks I’d like to improve, I think it gets the job done decently well. Plus, it was made of completely free plugins and themes. The base theme I used was Poseidon, which had a few really nice features, and the developer actually responded to my forum post for assistance.

I convinced Jess and Dana to let me do a WordPress site over a Wix or some other quick site-maker, and I think it paid off. Working with WordPress has taught me a lot about websites in a very hands-on way. It keeps me sharp. And I wonder, should I take my work freelance? Maybe once I stop considering myself an amateur (i.e., never).