Intro to Digital Content

When used responsibly, the internet is one of the most powerful tools we can use for social education and change. Consider the many global movements that began on the internet: MeToo, Black Lives Matter, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. Digital content, social media and online engagement can be utilised in our communities to achieve a range of  social justice goals.

Key terms and definitions that will help you navigate this course include:

Click on or hover over the cards below for more information


Involving or relating to technology. It may be content available on a laptop, phone, tablet or made with microphones, videos, computer programs and learning portals.


A live or pre-recorded voice, sounds or music. This can be on its own or linked to a video.


Content that is available via the internet. This could be hosted on a website or on a storage platform like the Cloud.


The computer program, phone app or website that is used to create or post content. e.g. Facebook, the Cloud, Adobe Premier Pro.


A visual file of either pre-recorded content, an animated visual file or live recording.


Artificial Intelligence (AI) uses patterns and data to recognize pictures, understand speech, and write content.

There are many benefits of online content for your community centre or organisation. A lot of it comes down to the way we live. The jobs, study, family roles, hobbies and other commitments we have will dictate the time that we have spare. The time that our community members have available to engage with us may not line up with the times that our centre or organisation are open. Extreme weather events have also created barriers to people accessing community centres and other services.

The COVID-19 pandemic required many of us to isolate in our homes. While much of the threat has subsided it has promoted awareness of the people in our communities for who face-to-face engagement is not ideal or accessible. This could be due to being immunocompromised, requiring assistance with mobility, chronic conditions and many other complexities. 1 in 6 Australians are estimated to have a disability. More than a quarter of people with a disability do not leave home as often as they would like due to their condition, mental health, finances or transport options.1

The people who access community centres can be some of the most vulnerable and disadvantaged people in our communities. With this comes a range of complexities including difficulty accessing transport, physical and mental illness, financial difficulties and many other issues that prevent people from leaving their homes or accessing services.

In addition to improving accessibility, other benefits your centre and community might experience include:

Click on or hover over the cards below for more information

Capacity Building

Encourage your community to engage with you online to build their digital skills. This will help them in future when they need to engage with other online services, learning platforms and social media.


A social media presence and following can create more exposure for centres and organisations looking to also attract further funding, sponsorship, partnerships or just more community members.


Provide a safe space online where people can share information, find like-minded people and build social supports.


Online communities can create a space for sharing resources and solving problems together.


Information can be provided on a greater scale with less required input. For example, recording an information session that can then be viewed online at a later date.

Some useful digital content that you could use as part of your Community Development practice include:

Click on the headings below for more information

Engage with your community in a digital space. This might be your local community or people who have a similar interest or identity. Share stories, photos, videos, documents and promote upcoming events.

Common Platforms:

Gather information from your community members or stakeholders. Collect feedback for community needs analyses and engage your community to have their say on current issues.

Common Platforms:

From simple factsheets and infographics through to full-blown online courses. Build the capacity of your community and promote social change through education and awareness raising.

Common Platforms:

Send monthly or quarterly updates to your community members with details of what’s happening and upcoming events.

Common Platforms:

Utilise bulk messaging services to notify your community members of upcoming events or reminders.

Common Platforms:

Conduct online focus groups and information sessions. Reach people who are unable to attend in person.

Common Platforms:

Promote social education or action and build community capacity and discussion through this content.

Common Platforms:

Give your organisation a home base on the internet. Post content specific to your organisation and have it accessible to people regardless of the social media platforms they engage with.

Common Platforms:

A Moment of Reflection...

This course is an example of online content.

  • What are the advantages for you of doing this course online right now rather than attending a face to face session?
  • How do you see your organisation utilising online content to promote  community development principles (social justice, empowerment, active citizenship, human rights, respect for diversity, etc)?

Share your thoughts in the comments section at the bottom of this page.

While it might be as simple as setting up a social media account and starting to post content, we encourage you to first consider how and why you want to engage with your community.

Enjoying the course so far? Buy the course or the full Getting Started in Community Development package.

  1. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (2022) People with disability in Australia 2022, catalogue number DIS 72, AIHW, Australian Government. Accessed on 16/03/23 at

Be Connected is an Australian Government initiative designed to reduce digital isolation of older Australians. There are a number of great free resources to help people of all ages access and create online content. There are helpful articles from the basics of using a web browser and sending emails through to using the Cloud to back up your data.

This article from Reset Digital for Good looks at the different kinds of Digital and Online Activism being used for social change.

Learn more about communicating via email lists from the Community Toolbox Kit.

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