How to use the "Activities" section of OverFiftiesFriends (left menu):
The Activities section of OverFiftiesFriends is the focal point of our social community. It's where you, the members, create, join and discuss activities. OFF is essentially not an events site, but a member-run portal and forum. So it's up to you to be active and make things happen. See the individual sections below, as laid out in the left menu of the site, for more information on how to use them.
Calendar - Clicking here takes you to a calendar showing all the activities members have created. Days with activities planned are highlighted, and clicking on those days takes you to those activities. At the top of the calendar you can also click on coming or previous months.
Create Activity - This is a link you should definitely familiarise yourself with! This takes you to a simple form to fill in to make an activity appear on the site. You can create an activity that is definitely happening, with a date, time and place. Or you can create it as a discussion, and when someone clicks your activity, there is a link under the image that takes you to the discussion on it (in the Activities Forum).
When you create an activity, just fill in as much or as little information as you wish. To add dates and times, make sure you use the format indicated next to the respective field. You can also click on the little calendar image when selecting dates. The category field allows you to select which category your activity best fits under. This also makes it easier for people to find your activity.
Furthermore, there is a Privacy selection field when creating an activity. You can decide if your activity is Public (anyone can join), Approval-based (you need to approve members who request to join your activity) or Invitation Only (you send out individual invitations to members you would like to attend). A very useful tool in a community of so many members!
You can add a picture to make your activity more appealing; just click on the "Browse" button to find the image you want on your computer (you will need to have an image on your computer already). When you have filled in all the information you wish and found a picture, just click on "Create" at the bottom of that page.
Once your activity has been created, it joins the list that is available by clicking the main Activities link. There, you can also sort the activities according to Location, Name, Newest and Latest Discussed. In the top right corner of that page, there is also an activities search function, broken down into Category Search and Geographical Search. For instructions on using these, click here.
Approvals - Clicking on the Approvals link shows you a list of members who have requested to join your activity and are awaiting your approval. This way, you can first visit the members' profiles, and if necessary message them first or chat. You can then decide whether to accept or decline their request from your approvals list.
Invitations - Here you can see Activities that other members have invited you to. After maybe clicking to read more about the activity or the member, you can decide whether to accept or decline their invitations.
My Activities - This section allows you to keep track of your activities here on Over Fifties Friends. Any activity you own, having created it using the Create Activity link, is listed here. When you click on one of your activities, it gives you all sorts of options for managing it. It also shows you who has joined (if your activity was created as "Public", the members will not have required your approval). There are 4 very useful links under Options. Here is how to use them:
Remove Activity: Does just that!
Manage Alerts: This is a great function and essential if you want to generate interest in your activity from other over 50s. Clicking here allows you to send email alerts to all the members who have joined your activity. Click "Create Alert" to make a new one. Give it a title, such as "Pub lunch reminder". Choose whether it will be sent automatically (at a time you select) or manually there and then. Put a date and time if you have selected Automatic. Then fill in the content of your alert. These alerts will go directly to the users' email. Alerts are stored, and any time you click on Manage alerts (from within your activity) you can view, remove or edit them. You can create as many as you need.
Manage Members: This page shows you a list of attending members and a list of members awaiting approval (if you selected that as your activity type). It gives you the option to remove members from your activity (if they have been abusive for example) and also to make them "Admin". Making them administrators of the activity will allow them to also manage members and edit the activity, just like you can as creator.
Edit Activity: This takes you back to the page you used for creating the activity initially. You can now make any changes (dates, times, privacy type and so on). If there is new information about your activity, be sure to use this edit tool to change how it appears on the site. It would then be wise to use the Alert system, explained above, to let the members of the activity know.
Activities I'm Attending - This link allows you to view all the activities on Over Fifties Friends that you are attending. Here, you can click on them to view the info and which other over 50s are going along. You can also join the discussion on the activity in the Forum, by clicking on the link under the image. To find more activities of interest, click on the main Activities link in the left menu and browse or use the search in the top right of that page. Click here for instructions on using the search.