Making dreams come true takes more than the wave of a magic wand. In the case of the Reach for a Dream Foundation, it takes a national organisation of 7 branches, 30 full-time staff members, 250 volunteers, an ever-growing roster of sponsors and supporters, and a robust IT infrastructure to enable all the background work that makes the magic happen.
“We fulfil the dreams of children with life-threatening illnesses,” says CEO Julia Sotirianakos. “On average we fulfill between 3 and 4 dreams a day, which is approximately 1,400 a year.”
Reach for a Dream uses Pastel Evolution to run its operations, which covers everything from matching children and donors to managing its cash book and accounts, customer relationships, events and lead generation. But with 7 branches around the country, connectivity was a serious problem. “With 30 people plus volunteers all trying to connect to the central database at once, even with high-speed Diginet lines our systems slowed to a crawl,” says Sotirianakos. “We were reduced to having to do things manually to try and manage the chaos.”
As part of a broader driver to upgrade all its hardware and systems, the Foundation turned to Vox Telecom to find a better way to give everyone fast access to the central database. “We’d been to everyone and tried everything,” says Sotirianakos, “but Vox Telecom has been exceptional in responding to our needs. They really did nail it.”
Reach for a Dream is now using Cloudware from Vox Telecom, a cloud-based service that allows any application to be delivered to any device.
“The beauty of Cloudware is that there is no need to set up a virtual private network (VPN) or install software on many different devices,” says Jonathan Young of Vox Telecom. “All that’s transmitted from the central server to the user’s device is pixels, so it’s very secure and very fast.”
“This is an absolutely incredible solution that has been a lifesaver for us,” confirms Sotirianakos. “We sent out an email showing everyone how to set it up and it’s worked seamlessly – all we need to do is enter a user name and password and we’re in. There’s no more waiting five minutes for anything to happen. It’s made all of us more effective.
Sotirianakos says the Reach for a Dream Foundation had intended to pay full price for the software until Vox Telecom offered to donate it, “but if I had to pay for it again, I would. It’s been an absolute pleasure.”