By Cheryl Mendenhall, Senior Lecturer
Here at the Temerlin Advertising Institute we stress the importance of responsibility in advertising, whether that is professional responsibility, social responsibility, or the everyday choices we make in our field. My focus is in graphic design, and I wanted to share with you some of the many ways design can be used for the greater good. It can be small things like using recycled paper or soy ink in a project or something big like designing a way for people to communicate in health care situations where there may be a language barrier.
Many non-profits struggle to get their message heard; we as designers can help develop strategies and create materials to accomplish their unique goals.
You may know immediately what cause speaks to you, but if not, there are many resources available to help you find a connection. American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) has a program called Design for Good described as “a movement to ignite, accelerate and amplify design-driven social change.” On their website they showcase inspiring projects and provide a wide variety of resources including ways for connecting designers and non-profits, groups that provide learning opportunities, and sources for funding and support grants for your self-initiated projects.
Or how about this? What do you get when you combine creatives, non-profits and a super quick deadline? A fantastic idea for helping out non-profits – a 24-hour createathon. Now that’s a GOOD reason to pull an all-nighter.
Here are some projects I find interesting:
- Nothing Campaign – to raise donations for food banks
- I Wonder What it’s Like to be Dyslexic by Sam Barclay
- Healthcare Communication Tools: Empowering the People of Kibera
- Eden’s Paper – plantable wrapping paper
- The Donkey Sanctuary – rebranding the world’s largest donkey charity
I began working with non-profits early in my career as a way to give back when I didn’t have the money to donate. I continue to do it now because it brings me joy.
How we use our skills is up to us. I encourage you to find something that speaks to your heart and share your skills.