Grassroots cultural and community organisations often lack resources to showcase and communicate their work. ‘We design for the community’ pairs up organisations who need communications support with design students. The students help organisations improve their communications strategy under the guidance of design industry professionals. We believe in a collaborative design process where organisations, designers and students bring expertise, creativity and enthusiasm to develop bespoke solutions together. So that the next blog, leaflet or social media post can help organisations attract new members, reach new users and build stronger partnerships.

Applications for students and organisations are now open for 2024. This year’s programme will be a ‘Flyer Edition’ – the call goes out to all design students who consider themselves print whizzes and to organisations who believe they might benefit from a printed flyer to distribute amongst their community. As always, the programme is free to take part and students will receive London Living Wage for their consultancy work.

‘We design for the community’ is the result of the collaboration between Marco Ugolini and Axel Feldmann, objectif.co.uk with the Mayor of London’s Culture and Community Spaces at Risk programme.



Cultural and community organisations who:

  • Are based in London
  • Operate out of a space (please note that your private accommodation cannot be considered as a space)
  • Contribute to community resilience by amplifying seldom heard voices and increasing community influence in decision-making

Students who are recent graduates or currently enrolled on a design or communications related course (graphic design, photography, illustration, journalism, creative writing and more) in the UK, and who want to:

  • Work on real life design briefs
  • Actively support London’s grassroots cultural and community organisations
  • Gain experience in a collaborative design approach

Are you a tutor from a design or communications school? Please email us at info@wedesignforthecommunity.org. We are actively looking for collaborators and as many students to get involved in the programme as possible.


Have registered !

Registrations for 2024 are now closed


We received 61 applications in this round. In the first two editions of the programme we received 246 sign ups from organisations and students. So far 24 organisations and 32 students have participated in the programme in 2022 and 2023.


The programme will run over four stages:

Expression of Interest

Cultural organisations, community organisations and students can register their interest using our light-touch form. The Expressions of Interest will be reviewed by the project team against a set of criteria.

The deadline to register is 27 May 2024, at 10am.


For cultural and community organisations
We will prioritise Expressions of Interest from cultural and community organisations who meet the eligibility criteria set out in the ‘Who can participate’ section and:

– Who are led by or serving communities historically excluded from accessing and securing space, including: Black, Asian and minority ethnic, children and young people, Deaf people, people with disabilities, people with LGBTQ+ identities, low-income groups, older people and women-led groups
– Who are located in areas of London where there is a lack of, and demonstrated need for, this type of cultural or community space
– Where the nature and the urgency of the ask can be meaningfully addressed through the programme.

For this year’s ‘Flyer Edition’ we will prioritise applications from organisations who can demonstrate a requirement for printed materials for distribution.

For design students
We will aim to assign you a brief that best matches your subject area and skills. We will prioritise Expressions of Interest from design students who meet the eligibility criteria set out in the ‘Who can participate’ section and:

– Who can demonstrate a skill to deliver a project independently
– Whose portfolio matches the brief
– Who come from a background historically underrepresented in the design industry, including: Black, Asian and minority ethnic, Deaf people, people with disabilities, women, people with LGBTQ+ identities, low-income groups.

For this year’s ‘Flyer Edition’ we will prioritise students who can demonstrate to have skills in creating design for print, typography, photography and / or illustration. An understanding of challenges facing London’s grassroots community and cultural organisations would be an advantage.

Please note that we will only be able to accommodate a small number of applications for this round of the programme.

We will announce all participants by 31 May 2024.

Communications Strategy

The shortlisted cultural and community organisations will be invited to a 30 minute 1:1 session with the project consultants. In this session we will discuss existing communications by the organisations, and collectively establish a brief for the student.

As preparatory work for the summer school the student will be asked to carry out thorough research of the field of communications by non-profit organisations, and produce a bespoke in-depth design and communications analysis and strategy for the organisation they’ve been paired with.

We will arrange a video-call consultation with you between 5 and 10 June 2024.

Summer School

The Summer School is a 1-week design workshop where students build on the research produced in the preparatory stage and develop a design for a bespoke printed flyer for the organisation, under the supervision of the project consultants. On the last day of the week 50 copies of the flyer will be printed at the facilities of the venue, and handed over to the organisations.

During the Summer School we will also host two to three lectures, open to students and participating organisations, covering social media and creative writing.

The Summer School is free of charge to all participants.

The Summer School will take place 8 to 12 July 2024 at the University of Greenwich.






‘We design for the community’ is managed and delivered by a team of design and editing professionals:

‘We design for the community’ is supported by the Mayor of London through the Culture and Community Spaces at Risk programme. The Mayor’s Culture and Community Spaces at Risk programme aims to protect at-risk spaces valued by local communities through a blended offer of direct business support, advocacy and training opportunities.


“This programme and the experience that it provided was something I have been craving since I started my MA in Graphic design. Not only did it provide me with the opportunity to work for an actual NGO, but it also provided us with a studio environment to work in.”

Participating student

“[Participating in the programme] enables our organisation to revamp our website and by doing so – our online profile significantly, this was something that we did not have the resources to do and via this programme we were able to get it done to a great standard.”

Participating organisation

“The opportunity to work with a live client in a collaborative and open process through conversational dialogue has enabled me to think very differently about the way I work, to try to understand the core ethos of any future organisation that I work with, and to maintain that dialogue and conversational practice throughout the design process.”

Participating student

“We have met someone who has advised us the needs of our organisation as well as introduced us to someone with the capacity to work with us.”

Participating organisation

“[Our organisation was given]
a professional website which is of interest to corporate or grant funders … whilst still maintaining our identity.”

Participating organisation


If you have any questions about the programme, please email us at:

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