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I think most of you know its Mozilla Service Week this week. We’ve been featuring stories and opportunities on the Mozilla Service Week blog, and as you know here on my blog –I usually like to try to find ways that everyone can get involved in making the Web better, no matter how technically advanced you are! Everyone can help make a difference.

One way I’ve been getting involved this week is to help bookshare.org. Bookshare are a non-profit org who are committed to helping people with visual impairments, physical disabilities and/or learning disabilities by dramatically increasing the quantity and timely availability of books and newspapers in accessible formats.

What does that mean? Its means for example if you are blind, you want to be able to have access to books (and the latest bestseller books) just like everybody else. bookshare.org is helping people enjoy the beauty of reading.

They already make more than 50,000 books available to folks who need them in accessible formats for people of all ages and disabilites – who have different tastes.

People in the world love to read and those of us who read everyday take that completely for granted. One of the small ways you could help bookshare is by writing a review of your favourite book and sending it to them. We all want to have recommendations before we start reading a book, so please help by sharing your opinions with others.

Its easy to get involved, simply…

1. Visit http://bookshare.org/ and use the search field to check for the book you have in mind.

2. If its there, write a brief or detailed review (your choice!)

3. Email it to volunteer@bookshare.org – and they will upload it onto the site for you.

Its amazingly rewarding and so easy to do. Why not make a point of doing it every time you finish reading a book! 🙂

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For folks in the Mozilla community volunteering is a way of life. Its what drives them and what has created one of the most wildly used and translated pieces of software in the world…

… Today we kicked off Mozilla Service Week – which has brought a new element to what volunteering at Mozilla means. Over the past months we’ve been encourgaing people to step up and make a difference in their area by directly offering technology related help. That’s more than sitting behind a monitor and coding, and more than submitting a bug — its about meeting face to face, offering advice, and helping someone enjoy this really wonderful thing we call the Web.

As someone involved in Marketing and who is not a coder, web designer, and doesn’t have anything like the amazing skills most of you have — I was concerned I wouldn’t be able to get involved and help make a difference. Well, I can tell you that it doesn’t matter what skill level you have — you can always help someone else have a better experience on the Web. Advocate why you love it, share how you use it, make sure people know why we need to protect it. There’s so much we can do.

Please go to mozillaservice.org, sign up and help us make the Web a better place this week, and for always.

Read more:

http://blog.mozilla.com/blog/2009/09/14/mozilla-service-week-is-here/

http://mozillaservice.org

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Over the past few months we’ve mentioned several times about our plans to launch a technology related volunteer week, and today we are very proudly unveiling mozillaservice.org

During the week of September 14-21 we are asking people all over the world to step up and make a difference in their local communities by using the beauty of the Web.

We want people to come forward and volunteer their time, to seek out opportunities to do good in their communities, and make a real difference to people’s live with technology.  We’re looking for people who want to share, give, engage, create, and collaborate by offering their time and talent to local public benefit organizations, non-profits and people who need their help —

i) you could be a coder, or do testing, localize, or you might know networks etc

ii) you know how to use the Web, and are Web savvy

Here are some ways you could help:

* Help a full time working Mum learn how to buy groceries online when her kids are sleeping
* Connect with your local community centre and offer to build a website, or a calender of events
* Reach out to a local library and offer to write a tutorial on how to use the Web
* Design a twitter background image for an NGO
* Go to your local school and volunteer to help set up wi-fi network
* Refurbish an old laptop and donate it to a senior citizens retirement home
* Call a family meeting and explain to everyone why the Web is important
* …. the lists are really endless.

Everyone should have the opportunity to know how to use the Internet, have easy access to it, and have a good experience when they’re online. As you know, Mozilla as a public benefit organization has a firm mission to make the Web better for everybody. In fact, the Mozilla community already has an incredible track record of doing amazing things. So we know, that however big all small people’s action are — they will make a serious difference.

We’ve so far launched mozillaservice.org in English, however, over the coming weeks with the help of the Mozilla community, Mozilla Service Week will be available in many languages and with additional partners.

So what should you do next?

You can learn more on how to get involved by either volunteering or listing your, or your organization’s needs. You can also already pledge how many hours of support you would like to volunteer.

Giving and creating are so much of open source life, we are very proud to bring those skills, the energy, and the caring nature of people into the lives of as many people as possible.

Please get involved with Mozilla Service Week – Everyone can help build a better internet.

Go to mozillaservice.org

Add Mozilla Service Week Twitter

Tag anything related – mozservice09

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Credits:
Mozilla Service Week so far has been made possible by scores of people – Mary Colvig, Austin King, Stephen Donner, Krupa Raj, Jeremy Orem, and Peter Deitz. There are many, many more people Austin has mentioned on his blog as well.

NB: We are building Mozilla Service Week out in the open with the help of many volunteers – there will be many more people to thank over the coming weeks.

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