This week, I was called on by the CEO of The United Way of Lancaster County, Kevin Ressler, to create a visual representation of a new grant program. The turn-around time on the project was quick, he needed the finished piece within the next 48 hours. I spent 5 hours within the next two days to meet his deadline.
The concept of the grant program was provided to me via Powerpoint, and a flow chart. Kevin wanted to visualize the flow of the program, and the opportunities each grantee would have to receive an additional grant, if they were able to raise funds up to the amount of the initial grant. By doing so, they would then receive a second grant that matched the funds they raised. Not confusing at all! So, I knew I wanted to show the flow of funds and the opportunity of receiving multiple “flows” of money, with the grantees at the center of the piece.
It was also important to display the inter-disciplinary possibilities for the grantees. The grants will be given to organizations dedicated to four areas – education, innovation pilots, health & economic mobility. There is a possibility that some organizations will have missions that focus on two or more of those areas, and overlap is possible. I showed this through using transparencies and blending modes in Adobe Illustrator, and equally linking four circles.
I outlined the steps of the grant program within the infographic. There are four steps in total, with the first one being the inclusion of “backbone” support grants. These are commitments United Way of Lancaster County will make to support the grantees throughout the program, and can include DEI intiatives, technology supports, etc.. The second is the initial grants for the four areas of focus. Each area of focus will have $50,000 total. The goal is to fund as many small organizations / budding non-profits as we can, instead of funding one large project. The intent of this project is to ignite the community and work toward a common goal, together.
Since UW has just four colors in their palette, I used transparencies to create depth to the infographic. To communicate community involvement in the grant program, I used a stock illustration of charity donations that shows several sets of hands holding jars of money, credit cards & coins. I noted that this illustration utilizes different skin tones, and appreciate the inclusive intentionality of the graphic.
One theme that I continue to hold as a common theme in the graphic work I do is a nod to hand-painted signs and poster graphics. I love the bold feel of both, as well as the human element. Since the United Way has always upheld the importance of the community, I feel that their visual communication should do so, too.
At the end of the week, I continued to work on the Stacked Folder project.