Everyone will agree that COVID-19 has dealt our Posts, Districts
and even the Department some serious blows. Post homes have had
to shutter the doors. Posts and Districts have had to conduct
virtual meetings. Social events have been shut down. VFW members
have been testing positive for COVID-19 and have even been
hospitalized because of it.
The whole concept of
membership drives has been slammed and slammed hard. Things are
looking pretty bleak. One can sense apathy in some corners of
the State of Minnesota. It’s time that “we” do something about
it. How, might you ask, can we do that? Learn how to build a
Post website. Our posts need new members. They are the life
blood of each post. Without new members, a post is doomed to
wither and die. A good way that our posts can reach out and be
“found” by new members is through a website or through social
One of the best examples of a post website is the
winner of the MN Department’s 2020 Social Media Site
competition. Take a few minutes and visit the Brainerd VFW
website at https://www.brainerdvfw.org and you will see what I
am talking about. What is a bit unique about this website is
that it was created by a post member who had no training in
website design. Mark Persons just wanted to tell the story of
the Brainerd Post in a positive way.
Anyone doing a
Google search could discover the site, visit it and see what the
post is like. Mark has been working on this site for the past
five years. It did not happen overnight. He started out with a
small simple site and it grew as his knowledge of web design
grew. You might think that Mark is some sort of internet geek.
Far from the truth.
Mark started on developing the
website when he was 68 years old. It sort of negates the saying
that “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” Mark says that he
currently spends between one and four hours a week updating and
improving the website. According to Mark, ”A post website needs
to be current and informative. Outdated information gives a
black eye to the organization.” Whether your post pays someone
to develop the general structure of the website or a volunteer
does it, the information cannot become dated.
National VFW has a Website Solution Program to help posts
develop a website with a minimum of effort. Visit www.VFW.org
for details. Mark also says “The younger crowd doesn’t look in a
phone book to find a post. They Google using their smart phones.
If your post is not on the web, then likely they won’t find you.
Worst yet, they might think you do not exist.” A post website is
needed to attract new members and maintain credibility in the
Mark has written an extensive article titled
“Writing and Maintaining a VFW Post Website.” The following are
some tips gleaned from his article. The complete article can be
https://www.brainerdvfw.org/web-writing.html. If Mark Persons
can build a website with just a bit of trainnig, so can you.