Humanity United

The Client

Established in 2005, Humanity United is a U.S.-based foundation with a mission to build peace and advance human freedom both domestically and abroad. Along with its partner organizations, Humanity United leads and invests in a wide range of humanitarian efforts including social-awareness campaigns, grantmaking, direct impact activities, and advocacy.

The Project

We worked with Humanity United to design a digital 2014 annual performance report. Unlike in years past, the client decided to forego a print-format report altogether. So we weren’t translating an existing document into digital form; we created the report from scratch as a freestanding microsite, using content provided by the client.

We decided to go with a single page parallax site that leveraged the client’s superb collection of photographic imagery. Our team designed an elegant browsing experience that allows the user to switch back and forth from a primary navigation bar to a dynamic, interactive scrolling option. Humanity United gave us leeway to deviate from its logo palette, allowing us to explore new color accents.

One of the unique challenges of the project was to create a unified series of graphic visualizations of HU’s program data. We had to find a common design theme among disparate datasets to render easily digestible fiscal snapshots of HU’s programs, all within a limited budget and timeframe. After much experimentation and iteration, we found ways to represent the client’s data using a consistent visual language that allows users to toggle between datasets and interpret them at a glance.

Along with compelling graphics, the client wanted to incorporate an interactive timeline into the report to highlight notable events and accomplishment throughout the year. We looked into several options and decided that a vertical timeline with an interactive scrolling feature was the best way to go. When scrolling through the timeline, the user can browse key articles and videos that offer further insight into the organization’s activities.

Humanity United has an image-rich website that showcases their global humanitarian work. We knew it was important to maintain the same level of visual engagement for the performance report, so we worked closely with the client to select, source, and curate a powerful photographic experience. In consultation with the client, we chose a beautiful landing image that draws the user in and anchors the site, reinforcing the emotional impact of the organization’s message and mission.

Since its launch, this year’s Humanity United performance report has seen more than double the web traffic of last year’s report. We believe this is a demonstration of just how much a thoughtful and thought-provoking digital experience can pay off. We were able to create a report that not only informed and educated the user about Humanity United’s accomplishments in 2014, but also conveyed the emotional gravity of the organization’s challenging work.