Case Study: Welcoming Communities Initiative

The Client

Welcoming Community Initiative (WCI)
Victoria M. Esses, Co-Chair WCI
Meyer Burnstein, Senior Fellow and Director of Policy and Planning  

Type of Project

Enterprise Software Development, CMS

The Problem

 WCIs former website and management solution no longer fit their needs.

  • Complicated back end – difficult to navigate, update resources, manage content, make changes, and train new users using the old platform.
  • Limited display – different types of content (reports, events, e-bulletins video) could not be published in a suitable format.
  • User Access – there was little control over user governance; members and editors had similar access to the website.
  • Branding – the visuals of the old site did little to enforce the WCI brand.

Old site front end

Limited ability to display information

The Solution

OAK built a custom CMS tailored to WCI’s needs.


We built a custom wordpress platform.  Why wordpress?  Because a wordpress platform allows our clients:

  • comprehensive media integration;
  • a simple but robust organization of several different types of content, allowing them to be shared in multiple categories;
  • complete control over user access to the back-end of the solution (e.g. John can publish e-bulletins, Amy can publish e-bulletins and events);
  • collaboration on content by multiple users; and
  • the ability to quickly and efficiently make changes to these site.

All without breaking the bank.  And how long did it take to train users on the new solution?  Just one short morning session. Elegant and simple.

Simple to use customized back end




Functionality is only fun if it looks good.  So the OAK team collaborated with our in-resident designer to design a site that is:

  • easy to navigate;
  • shows off different types of content to their potential (reports, e-bulletins, events, links, database of resources, etc.);
  • colourful and eye-catching, with the WCI brand being a focus; and
  • easy to work with, with a customized back end design that looks as good as the front end.


Different content displayed in different formats

Libary design for easy retrieval of information














About WCI


The Welcoming Communities Initiative (WCI) is a multidisciplinary alliance of universities, colleges, and community organizations dedicated to promoting the integration of immigrants and minorities across Ontario.


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