What is Beacon?
Beacon provides a membership record keeping system which stores the necessary details of all members, including names, addresses and contact details, as well as membership status and payment records.
It stores details of all the Groups we run, the membership of those groups and allows Group Leaders to contact members through a secure email system.
It allows Group Leaders to find your emergency contact details if needed.
Beacon is used to manage our finances and each Group could keep its own financial records on the system (but none do).
There are administrative tools to aid the smooth running of a u3a. (eg trip management which we do not use)
Who developed Beacon?
Beacon is a computer database system which was developed within the Third Age Trust by a national team of experts and enthusiasts. In 2020 it was transferred to a professional IT company. A major upgrade is scheduled for release in 2021. We pay £1 a head for using the system.
Who uses the system?
It is now used by over 400 individual u3as.
What can members do in Beacon?
You can see you membership details using the Beacon Portal.
Beacon provides a system that allows individual members to renew their membership online. (We are working to achieve this in 2021)
Is it secure?
Your data is held securely. It’s a national system but implemented entirely locally. Data access is controlled on a “need to know” basis, so that only those that must have access to information can see it.