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On Line Web Reporting

March 21, 2016

Several years ago we were looking at a way to allow Master Gardeners to report their work and learning hours on-line. I looked at various options and what other states were using or trying and found out that some of the other states had paid big bucks to someone to develop a system, and continued to pay for maintenance. Then I got a call from a MG in Benton County named Bob Santos who offered his help for free. He had done a similar system for the Master Naturalists and was willing to tackle the job. A couple of years later we rolled out our system and now 4 years later we have an excellent on-line web reporting system designed and maintained by Bob. Our program is forever indebted to him for all the work he has done. Today we had a meeting with our IT programming expert Steven who is going to try to help Bob and take over some of the management of the program. Bob will thankfully be in the wings for all our questions. I drove Steven, Julie and I up to Bentonville to meet with Bob to find out the ins and outs of the program. All through lunch and then the ensuing meeting at the county office, Bob and Steven talked computer greek to Julie and I. online web reporting planning (2) I was able to share some background, and Julie shared what she has been doing, and then we sat back and let two computer minds collide and intertwine. online web reporting planning (1)

online web reporting planning (4) At times I was sure they were talking in code, since I understood nothing, but I think we can all breathe a sigh of relief that our program is in great hands with Steven and Bob.

Once Steven is up to speed and we implement some changes Bob has made, we will roll out training across the state to update everyone and make sure we all know how to use the system. Reporting is an extremely important part of volunteer programs, and we want to capture all your hours that you give to our program. If you see Bob, be sure to tell him thanks for all he has done to help the Arkansas program. We are blessed with so much talent.

On another note, how have your gardens fared the past two mornings? We were only at 42 yesterday morning, but I did have a frost this morning and it was 32. If I had that on my sloped yard in Little Rock, I cannot imagine how low the temps got in the northern tier. I don’t see any damage in my yard, but my son had some basil get nipped back–it was too early to plant that anyway! The plants in the raised beds at the Benton County office looked pretty good. benton co office. mar.16 In looking at the week forecast it looks like Thursday is another cold one with a low predicted at 35 in LR, so beware.

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