This is a blog you should be reading…if you haven’t already.
By Madelaine Paterson
Natasha Granatstein of the Danforth-based blog, DECA Diaries, shares Danforth’s history and purpose, shedding light on why this medium is so crucial for connecting with the community.
The motivation to create a blog was all about reinvention. As the chairperson of the Danforth East Community Association (DECA), Natasha sent out e-newsletters updating community members on what was going on with DECA and the Danforth at large. It was a tedious process so she introduced a blog instead. DECA Diaries is now a one-stop location for people to access the association’s happenings in a more versatile medium.
History of DECA
DECA was created in Spring 2007. One of its primary functions is aiding in local business revitalization through consulting and marketing. Their blog’s current outpost, the DECA Diaries, has been around for over a year. The initial reception was met with some discomfort, like any new technology. Only now does Natasha realize how the blogs growth has “taken off with the development of the Danforth.” The blog now has over 300 subscribers plus many daily readers just passing through.
What’s it About?
Natasha sees the blog as a tool of connecting and engaging with the existing community. Much of DECA Diaries content is association-based, but general community information is also posted. She feels that, “sharing information about the neighbourhood is powerful.” Natasha is the only person who controls the blog as writer and creator, however, members can email in with news, events, and content suggestions. One issue the blog keeps citizens informed about is safety and crime. The association has a safety team involved in the well-being of the neighbourhood. The blog is becoming a pillar of the organization in promoting these community functions.
Have Your Say
DECA Diaries is on the right track to maintaining its community connection. One key feature is the ability to comment on posts. Many blogs have now taken away the option of commenting due to its sometimes volatile nature. When it comes to comment moderating, Natasha does it herself. All comments are reviewed before approval. “There have been no issues with conversations. [There has] been disagreements, but that’s OK” she says, “it encourages further dialogue.”
Check out DECA’s website and blog to stay up-to-date with what’s happening on the Danforth.