Drupal has been the cornerstone of Redfin Solutions' success building digital experiences since 2005. Starting with Drupal 4.7, we have created websites primarily in the non-profit and higher-ed space using Drupal.
Patrick Corbett and Chris Wells, Redfin’s co-owners, have always subscribed to the idea of giving back to the Drupal community that has provided the CMS framework used in their business. They believe that agencies like theirs that benefit from the Drupal technology should be “makers” instead of “takers” in the Drupal space. There are so many ways to do that.
Financial contributions are often the first way that companies give back to Drupal. Redfin Solutions has been sponsoring Drupal camps in the New England region for many years. Design4Drupal Boston, New England Drupal Camp (NEDCamp) and Western Mass Drupal Camp (now NERDSummit) have been recipients of Redfin’s sponsorship throughout the years.
Supporting the Drupal Association is another way to fund the Drupal project. Redfin Solutions became a Silver Certified Partner in 2022. Several employees are also Individual Members. Become an individual member or become a supporting organization at whichever level works best for your organization.
Local events help to build the local Drupal community and help folks in the area learn about Drupal. Redfin employees continued to be the lead-organizers of Design4Drupal Boston, in 2022 running a one-day virtual keynote and contribution event and holding monthly webinars focused on relevant design and front-end topics. I also helped organize New England Drupal Camp (NEDCamp) in its return to an in-person event. Volunteering at events can range from weekly meetings where organizers plan all the event details to a day of event volunteering, such as working at the registration desk or as a room monitor. Each is important for events to be successful. I have met so many people over the years through volunteering. I try to volunteer at every Drupal event I attend and you should, too!
If you organize any Drupal events (camps, local meetups, virtual events, contribution events, trainings, etc.) consider joining the Event Organizers Working Group (EOWG). We meet once a month to discuss topics relevant to event organizers around the globe. Join our monthly meetings to share what you have learned or ask questions of other organizers. I was on the EOWG formation board and served as Vice President of the board in 2022. We are currently searching for a couple of new Board Members if you would like to contribute in that way.
In 2022, Chris and I continued to co-lead the Project Browser Strategic Initiative. This is our first experience giving back to Drupal in this way. Bringing people together to work on a defined goal of the Drupal project has allowed us to meet many folks around the globe with a shared interest in adding this functionality to Drupal. When Dries Buytaert, founder of Drupal, announced the initiative at DrupalCon, we both independently decided this would be a big win for site builders and folks new to Drupal to find it easier to discover options for adding functionality to their Drupal site. We both felt we had the Drupal and management experience that would benefit the initiative. Whether you want to help lead an initiative or contribute to individual issues, consider getting involved in this initiative! We are looking for folks in our target audience (site builders and those newer to Drupal) to give feedback on the current state of the project, for designers to create logos for the modules, documentation experts to write short non-technical descriptions of the module, folks knowledgeable (or interested in learning!) Svelte, as well as UX and development resources. Join the #project-browser channel on Drupal Slack and join our weekly meeting there.
We focused our efforts on the Project Browser Initiative at Contribution Events last year. We organized the events, mentored folks and were mentored by other members of the community. We welcomed folks from all the areas mentioned above and made a lot of progress during those events. Many folks who had never contributed before received their first contribution credit. Consider attending a Contribution event at a Drupal camp, DrupalCon, or at a Global Contribution day in your area. It’s a great way to meet the community and to learn about Drupal.
Maintaining Drupal projects is essential to Drupal’s success. Jay Huskins, one of Redfin’s developers, was accepted as one of the maintainers of the Drupal State module in 2022. He also released the Google Sheets Table module. There are many modules that are looking for co-maintainers -- even folks to stay on top of issue queues are tremendously valuable -- or just work on issues in the various issue queues. You will benefit from the mentoring you will receive from existing module maintainers and will have the opportunity to learn the code at a deeper level.
Other ways we gave back in 2022 included speaking at DrupalCon and Drupal Camps, participating in Talking Drupal and DrupalEasy podcasts, publishing blog posts, and just help folks by answering their questions on Slack channels. Everyone has something they can share with folks in the Drupal Community!
We all benefit from the efforts of all those who have contributed to Drupal over the years. Let’s all make an effort to contribute in some way in 2023. Giving back benefits you as much as it benefits the Drupal project and Drupal community.
Reach out to me if you are interested in contributing and would like to discuss how to get started.
Finally, thank you to Redfin Solutions for sponsoring our time on the Project Browser Initiative and other contributions. Thanks to all the organizations that sponsor their employees to contribute and to the individuals who volunteer their own time to give back. Lastly, thank you to all who have contributed over the years!