Project name


UNICEF Australia


UX/UI Design


Jan 21' - Dec '21

Project duration

UNICEF Australia

View project doc

Prototyped and developed the initiative U-Speak: a platform for UNICEF which aims to elevate the voices of young Australians through the power of conversation to better connect them with policy makers.

UNICEF Australia, at the forefront of championing solutions for the well-being of children globally. Focused on advocating for children's rights, the organization collaborates with diverse partners to address challenges related to health, education, protection, and emergency response. UNICEF Australia combines advocacy, policy influence, and direct programs to innovate and create lasting positive impacts.

• Preliminary user research
• Ideation and testing of our lo-fi intervention (‘convo cards’)
• Design and prototyping of our high-fi application ‘U-Speak’
• Production of pitch video which walks through the prototype
• Final project report of concept and project journey
• Presentation to the entire UNICEF office (70+ people) and subsequent invitation to take the concept to market by UA CEO

As a key player in a small transdisciplinary team, I drove impactful initiatives to elevate UNICEF's presence in Australia. Serving as the UX designer for the 'U-Speak' project, a collaboration between UNICEF Australia and UTS Creative Intelligence Capstone, our efforts resulted in a High Distinction. 'U-Speak' became a digital powerhouse, empowering young Australians (13-25) to actively participate in socio-political conversations. Endorsed by UNICEF Australia's CEO, Tony Stuart, the concept gained rapid traction, with its 75 conversation cards becoming a focal point at the World Youth Summit in 2022. This initiative not only amplified young voices but also created a lasting impact, bridging the gap between virtual and physical realms and reinforcing UNICEF Australia's position as a leader in youth engagement.

Customer Needs & Business Objectives

The inception of U-Speak was grounded in a pivotal question: How can we bridge the communication gap between young Australians and policymakers? To answer this question, we embarked on an exhaustive exploration of the problem space, utilizing a mix of research methodologies, interviews, and in-depth conversations. A striking revelation became apparent—75% of young Australians felt their concerns went unheard.This phase was not merely about identifying the problem; it was about establishing a continuous feedback loop. Regular checkpoints ensured that the evolving needs and nuances of the users were not merely acknowledged but seamlessly integrated into the design process.

Strategic Blueprinting for Impactful Change

The Define phase became more than just about problem identification—it evolved into framing a strategic blueprint for impactful change. As internal barriers within UNICEF Australia surfaced, the Define phase strategically refined the concept for maximum feasibility. Crafting innovative uptake strategies, formulating a robust safeguarding and privacy policy, and gathering insights from focus groups were pivotal tools employed to solidify U-Speak's foundation.The iterative approach continued into the Define phase, where feedback loops enabled constant adjustments. This not only kept the project aligned with evolving needs but also allowed for agility in responding to internal dynamics, forming the bedrock of a dynamic problem-solving approach.

Exploring both low and high fidelity solutions

Ideation wasn't confined to creative brainstorming; it involved a pragmatic exploration of innovative solutions. The introduction of "convo cards" marked a tangible shift—a low-fidelity tool mirroring genuine conversations. These cards, designed around the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, became a bridge between the digital and physical realms, encouraging discussions on socio-political issues among young Australians.Early testing and feedback sessions seamlessly wove into the ideation process. The iterative nature of design thinking ensured that 'convo cards' resonated effectively, evolving based on real-time user responses. Ideation wasn’t just about generating ideas; it was about crafting solutions that actively shaped the user engagement journey.

High Fidelity Prototypes & User Testing

Designing U-Speak wasn't just about aesthetic appeal; it was about creating a comprehensive ecosystem where young Australians felt their opinions truly mattered. Numerous iterations, influenced by user feedback, refined the 'convo cards' and gave birth to high-fidelity prototypes. Rigorous user testing became the litmus test, validating our approach and ensuring positive engagement.A t every step, user feedback played a pivotal role in shaping the UX/UI design. Continuous testing allowed for refinements that made the platform more intuitive, aligning seamlessly with the preferences of the 13-25 age group.

Nurturing Continuous Evolution

This project went beyond fostering engagement on socio-political issues—it actively contributed by providing UNICEF Australia with invaluable data, thereby shaping progressive policies reflective of the genuine concerns and voices of the youth. I pitched in-person to the entire UA office – following the pitch UA’s CEO invited our team to continue work within their Youth Engagement Team to refine the proposal and take it to market. U-Speak was also used as a tool with 100+ students at the UNICEF Better World Youth Summit at Taronga Zoo in July of 2022.