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Role of Email

In designing an email service for the Norfolk voluntary sector, one overriding consideration had to be taken into account. Many of the voluntary organisations will not have their own pc and modem. A system had to be developed allowing users access their email from any computer they can get to which has access to the internet. The answer is mail from web pages.

Mail from Web Page
Usually a computer has to be configured with your user-id before you can send email. In order to provide email sending capability to those organisations who don't have the facilities, we will provide a password-protected web page that email messages could be sent from. This would mean they could send email from any web browser they can borrow for a few minutes - a PC in the library for instance.

Email Hub
Finding other organisations email addresses will be easy. The database of voluntary organisations will include contact information, including email addresses. If a voluntary organisation already has an email address, that will be listed. Otherwise an email address will be set up for them.

NVN will administer its own email hub. An email hub allows us to be very flexible in the allocation of email addresses and can provide many more facilities such as mail forwarding, aliases, delivery by fax, mail from web page, and mailing lists.

Mail Forwarding
We can forward email to any other email address, including mailing lists and faxes as below. It is useful to provide an 'official' address whilst masking the personal id of the recipient.

Aliases
Aliases allow us to deliver to the appropriate user from a number of different user id's. For instance, an email address could be allocated to the job or department rather than an individual. Should the personnel change, the email address for admin or accounts need not.

Delivery by Fax
If voluntary organisations decide not to set up a modem link to an Internet Service Provider, we can arrange for email to be delivered by fax.

Mailing Lists
Newsletters and circulars can be distributed very cheaply via email. We will establish a series of email mailing lists. Sending email to a list ensures every member of the list receives a copy. Each mailing list will tackle a specific topic.

Initially we would expect to set up about 20 mailing lists allow ongoing discussions of topics of interest to the voluntary sector. A ÔmoderatorÕ or editor would be needed to promote, manage and develop these lists.