Facebook announces investment in community leaders

 In news, updates

Facebook has announced the launch of its Community Leadership Program, a global initiative that invests in people building communities.

The tech giant will commit tens of millions of dollars to the program, including up to $10m in grants that will go directly to people creating and leading communities.

In addition, the company introduced new tools for group admins and the expansion of its London-based engineering team that builds technology to help keep people safe on Facebook.

More than 300 community leaders from across Europe came together at the London meeting, including Blind Veterans UK, an advocacy organisation that provides practical and emotional support to blind veterans and their families; Donna Mamma, a support group for mothers in France to share advice and information; Girl Skate UK, which celebrates and brings together the female skateboarding community; High Society PL, a group of sneaker enthusiasts who bond over their shared passion; and Berlin Bruisers, Germany’s first gay and inclusive rugby club.

Community leadership

The Facebook Community Leadership Program is designed to empower leaders from around the world who are building communities through the Facebook family of apps and services. It includes:

  • Residency and Fellowship opportunities offer training, support and funding for community leaders from around the world.
    • Up to five leaders will be selected to be community leaders in residence and awarded up to $1m each to fund their proposals.
    • Up to 100 leaders will be selected for the fellowship program and will receive up to $50,000 each to be used for a specific community initiative.
  • Community Leadership Circles bring local community leaders together to meet up in person to connect, learn, and collaborate.
  • Groups for Facebook Power Admins, which are currently run with more than 10,000 group admins in the US and UK, are expanding to more members to help them share advice with one another and connect with our team to test new features and share feedback.

Applications are now open for the residency and fellowship. To learn more and apply, visit communities.fb.com.

New tools for group admins and members

Four new features have been rolled out by Facebook to support group admins. They are:

  • Admin tools: Admins can now find member requests, Group Insights and more together in one place, making it easier to manage groups and freeing up more time for admins to connect with members.
  • Group announcements: Group announcements let admins post up to 10 announcements that appear at the top of their group.
  • Group rules: Keeping communities safe is important. Now admins can create a dedicated rules section to help them effectively communicate the rules of the group to their members.
  • Personalisation: Each community has its own identity – now admins can add a personalised colour that is displayed throughout their group.

Engineering hub

A team of engineers across the globe builds technologies that help keep the Facebook community safe and secure. London is home to Facebook’s largest engineering hub outside of the US, and by the end of 2018, the company will double the number of people working in London on these issues.

Its engineering work on community safety includes the following:

  • Detecting and stopping fake accounts: Working to make sure Facebook is a community of people who can connect authentically with real people.
  • Protecting people from harm: Reducing things like harassment and scams that can happen in the real world and on Facebook, by building better tools to spot these issues and remove them.
  • Improving ways to report content: Making it easier for people to give feedback about things that shouldn’t be on our platform, which works in conjunction with our automated detection.
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