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Posted December 3, 2012

A clear, bold new face for Umoja

In previous stories, we’ve mentioned our involvement with Umoja Student Development Corporation, a Chicago nonprofit dedicated to equipping young people to succeed after high school. As we’ve worked with Umoja over the past two years on their communication needs, we had opportunities to interact with students in their Community Builders program and at their annual Training-to-Transitions event. Both were gratifying and illuminating — proof that the Umoja model works.

Today we launched Umoja’s brand new website. It’s the public-facing communications vehicle they’ve been waiting for: a clear, concise, and confident depiction of Umoja as they head into their 16th year. Most significantly, the new site clearly defines the "Umoja Model”: combining college & career readiness, social & emotional learning, and restorative justice to create the conditions in schools required for all students to succeed academically.

Working with Ted Christians, Alison Upton Lopez, and Meredith Slater over the past several months, we hammered out a shared vision for a CMS site that would maintain a bold visual simplicity while communicating complex information to both current stakeholders and prospective supporters and partners.

This new public site was a logical next step after an earlier 2011 project, in which we collaborated with key Umoja leaders to develop focused messaging in the context of a private microsite designed for presentation and development purposes.

If you’re unfamiliar with Umoja and their amazing work, we encourage you to bone up. As Carol Marin once wrote, “Umoja works.” We couldn’t agree more.