Designers to use their skills in promoting and documenting opportunities
NEW YORK, June 29, 2009 – The White House and the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) have requested AIGA members’ help in promoting public service opportunities in their communities during the “United We Serve” initiative, a summer of community involvement culminating in a National Day of Service and Remembrance on September 11, 2009.

On behalf of the Obama administration, the NEA has asked members of AIGA, the professional association for design, to visually promote local opportunities for community service and then create a visual record of the results. “Designers should be involved as citizens and as designers. Each designer has the ability to move others by making stories visible and capturing the community experience,” said AIGA Executive director Richard Grefé.

How AIGA members can get involved

• Find community service projects in your area on Serve.gov, then work with the project organizers to visually promote the event, program or call for service. This could take the form of a poster, brochure, website or any other type of visual communication encouraging others to get involved.

• Record and share the results by uploading your photos to Flickr using the tag designserves. Share photos of your work being used to promote a local opportunity (e.g., your poster on a bulletin board or a brochure on a registration table) or photos of people in action completing service projects (e.g., volunteers building a playground or planting a garden).

• Send a PDF of your design to AIGA for inclusion in a slideshow this fall on www.aiga.org. Include 1) credits for those involved with the design, 2) the name of the organization or group performing the service, if applicable, and 3) the title of the community service project.

About “United We Serve”
“United We Serve” is a nationwide service initiative that will help meet growing social needs resulting from the economic downturn. With the knowledge that ordinary people can achieve extraordinary things when given the proper tools, President Obama is asking Americans to come together to help lay a new foundation for growth. This initiative aims to both expand the impact of existing organizations by engaging new volunteers in their work and encourage volunteers to develop their own “do-it-yourself” projects. “United We Serve” is an initial 81 days of service, but will grow into a sustained, collaborative and focused effort to promote service as a way of life for all Americans.

To make it easy for Americans to get involved, the President is urging them to visit Serve.gov. Visitors can type in their zip code to find local volunteer opportunities, recruit volunteers by posting their organization’s projects, or get ideas for creating their own projects with friends, families and neighbors…

(This Press Release excerpt reposted from AIGA www.aiga.org/content.cfm/news-062909. Read the entire text there, find your local AIGA chapter and get involved in this great cause.)

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Ricky Salsberry is an interactive designer working in Chicago and the editor of The Donut Project. In his spare time he reads/rants about technology, watches hockey, wrecks his bike, and designs some more.