Embracing the World

About the Project

Embracing the World is an international humanitarian organization with volunteer groups around the world that take on service initiatives in their communities. It uses a de-centralized model, where each local group is empowered to work autonomously based on what is most needed in their locale.

The Challenge

While the organization was receiving accolades from the United Nations on being effective on its through-put of delivering aid, it had issues with communicating what their service areas consisted of. The breadth and scope of the organization was not well communicated on its website or promotional materials. If you asked 10 different volunteers what the organization was about, you would get 10 different answers.

My Role

I lead the project team in the redesign of the website, taking on a user experience design/project management  role, working closely with the product owner. The team also consisted of 2 grapic designers, 2 front end developers, and a team of content creators. It was a 100% remote team, with team members in California, New York, Germany, and India.


One of the biggest challenge of the project was developing the taxonomy – the bones of the site. We wanted top level categories that were concise and memorable, yet also communicate the breadth of what the organization was doing. I teased apart the 100+ existing projects, did competitive audits of other aid organizations, and vetted terms with stakeholders.

New Taxonomy


The new product categories are not just for the website; they are used in widely-distributed print materials, and volunteer trainings. Given a vocabulary that is more simple and memorable has helped the volunteers to become stronger ambassadors for the organization’s mission.