Any adult American, 18 years or older, is eligible to join. They must request an application packet from ConnectAGAIN. The packet has an application form which contains spaces for all personal information such as name, home address, driver' license, telephone number, etc. and an experience survey. The experience survey contains a series of experience categories such as occupations, hobbies, health issues, cities lived, places traveled, etc.
The applicant enters all their personal information on the application form. They then choose the entries each experience category they are willing to share. For example, the applicant may be an auto mechanic but doesn't want to give advice on repairing cars. They may have also been a policeman and are willing to share this experience. The applicant would check the ‘policeman' entry but not the ‘auto mechanic' entry within the occupations category.
The applicant sends the completed packet back to ConnectAGAIN where the application form is immediately separated from the experience survey. This security feature was designed to always keep a member's personal information separate from their experience and demographic information. Answers on the application form are placed into the membership database and the answers on the experience survey are placed in the experience database.
A member's record on the membership database and the experience database both contain the member's official ID. The ID value is a combination of their zip code, last four digits of the social security number and initials. Combining these three values into one field makes each ID unique but it does not reveal the member's actual identity. The ID is used to connect a member's personal information to their activity when donation requests are mailed but maintains the proprietary nature in the experience database.