We never set out to become a website company. The reality is that many years ago, even before the Internet became a reality for the public at large, I (Steve Nunnally) used to look at problems that people around the world faced. Everything from abuse to disability, from the financial struggles of the elderly and pregnant women, to problems like addiction, stalkers, homelessness and hungry children. I wondered if there might be a way to use the Internet to help people in these horrible situations. And what came to me was that perhaps while no one person or organization could ever have the time, money or resources to help every individual in need that perhaps what most people needed the most was someone to offer them a list of resources where they could get help.
The thought of making money was never part of my dream. In fact, as I set about putting things together I turned down repeated suggestions to accept donations, become a non-profit or accept government money in any form. Instead, everything was funded out of my own pocket (And I was and am just an average working Joe) and the time to create it started with my own, but was later facilitated by the wonderful efforts of close to a hundred volunteers (Many of whom themselves were disabled or surviving day to day) who donated their time and energy (I truly love these people with all my heart). Together we built KnightsOfKindness.com and BaddTeddy.com which were basically resources listing organizations that assisted the abused, disabled, seniors, parents of missing children and more. In fact, many of these volunteers actually went with me to Washington, D.C., to help show support for parents of the missing children. Together we also went to each and every one the 100 U.S. Senators offices asking for more help for the parents of missing children.
Unfortunately, life overwhelmed me and I was unable to keep up with the influx of emails, calls, organizing different campaigns, etc... that it took to keep things going and growing. Especially, being a working stiff doing just your usual day to day work. I pretty much collapsed from the overload and had to stop for a period of time.
Bit a funny thing happened. People started to contact me. They asked me if I could build them a website. They even wanted to pay me. Despite that I had never considered doing websites for pay, people were starting to line up. Why? Two reasons. The first is that they felt they could trust me because of what I was doing, why I was doing it and that I was not trying to profit from it. But still, it did not make sense for a business person to hire someone simply because they are a nice person. Businesses, whether they are big or small mom and pop shops have to make a profit in order to survive. So the second reason that people contacted me was that they had realized anyone who could put together a website that would rank number one in Google and all the other search engines for "abuse shelters", "abuse laws", "stalker laws", "governors telephone numbers", number two for "senators addresses" and more could probably help their small business show up in Google for their products and services within their local area. In other words, they felt they had found a nice guy who could help them make a profit.
As I started forward it became clear that my years and years of research into "How does the Internet work" and "How do the search engines determine which websites they should recommend first" could pay off for businesses as much as it would for good causes. And so I opened what would later become "Not Just Websites". But I made myself two promises.
The first promise was that I would only help nice businesses that were offering quality products in an open and honest manner. In fact, from the very beginning our business cards have stated that "We refuse to build websites for spammers, scammers, pornographers or rude people" followed by our Naples Clause which states "No Snobs". And trust me, we have suck to that promise 100% and my clients are some of the most wonderful people you could ever met. There is not one of them that I would ever hesitate to buy a product from or recommend to friend or family.
The second promise is that I would use part of the proceeds to build a new, bigger and much improved version of the early websites. This one would break down resources by city for the abused, disabled, seniors, etc... and be faster and easier to use. And that this second website would again be fully funded from my own pocket and not ask for money from anyone else. And that is again, a promise we have kept.
HelpByCity.com is now a giant resource where people can find almost anything and everything they need as far as community, private, city, county, state or federal resources for all kinds of adverse conditions and challenges in their lives. In fact, in the not to distant future this may well become the single largest resource for help in the USA. That than me tell you what is on there though, how about you simply click the link above and see for yourself. Changing the world was my childhood dream. And while I have found that no one person or group of people can change the entire world, it is possible to change the world, one smiling face at a time. Afterall, you can change help people change how they see the world around them. With that in mind, I hope you will take a minute to take a look at this free resource and then share it with any friends, family or strangers you know who need help.