My Role
UX/UI Design
UX Research
Information Architcture
June 2021 - August 2021
Project Info
Personal Project
Team of 1
Tools Used


The Problem

Many charitable organizations and their focus issues are faced with an inconsistent or non-existent public spotlight due to media and sociopolitical agendas and personal misgivings. Funding and awareness for many charitable groups/issues have continued to depreciate, resulting in communities not receiving the aid they desperately need. ​​

I wanted to rethink the way people could connect with charitable organizations, especially underrepresented, neglected ones, in a more neutral, informative manner, and alleviate people's persisting donations concerns.

My Solution

Our mobile app Refresh allows users to easily connect with electronic device disposal and repair outlets while simultaneously becoming more informed on the e-waste problem space.


  • In 2021, for the first time in two decades, only half of U.S. households donated to charity (CBS, 2021)
  • Many believe issues can't be solved, that donations are misused, and that their donations are too small to make a difference (The Life You Can Save, 2021)  
  • People feel overwhelmed, judged, and pressured by charities, causing them to not donate (Money Bites, 2020) ​
  • The media dictates the prioritization and attention given by the general public to specific topics and issues (Communication Theory, 2019)​
  • How issues are framed influences how people process, think and act (Communication Theory, 2019)
  • Media selectively allows certain issues to be talked about while discarding others (Communication Theory, 2019)


Empathize, Define
Understanding the space
Defining project goal
Project planning
Competitive Analysis
User Interview
User Personas
Design, Prototype
Solution Framing
Interactive Prototype
Project Reflection
OverviewResearchDesignFinal DesignReflection


Research Methods Used

Competitive Analysis
User Interviews


I looked at information-driven solutions that currently exist on the market. Limitations with these current platforms included limited charitable groups, restrictive donation minimums, non-intuitive search, lack of organization information, and confusing and inefficient use of screen real estate.

Outcome: I concluded that there is no app that necessarily provides an intuitive platform for donors to connect with a diverse pool of charities and comprehensively manage their giving.
Mobile Application Charitable Donation Solutions

01 - Positive Spontaneity  

  • "...more of an emotional decision... I wasn't trying to donate. Stuff would just come into my awareness."

02 - Reward

  • " can actually put down as a tax write-off."
  • "It's self-fulfillment. Some people might even describe it as cathartic."

03 - Rationale

  • "The number one thing is that what is their philanthropy? What's their cause? Because sometimes it has to match my interest, or what I believe in."

04 - Values

  • "Because you can still make a difference to some people somewhere in some small way..."

05 - Convenience

  • "But right now, I don't have time, lots of other things going on...It has to do with convenience...I'd rather just set it online and have it donate to have it go out of my account on a monthly basis, and I don't have to worry about it..."
Design Implication: The solution should be online and convenient.

Generated Themes

User Interview Thematic Analysis

Data Coding:
Coding involves highlighting sections of text and creating codes to describe their content to gain a condensed overview of the recurring main points and common meanings of the interviews. I coded five interviews.

Theme Generation: Once I identified patterns among my interview codes, I combined codes into several umbrella themes. I have included example themes below.


User Personas

The Bottom Line

Many people have a set of criteria and goals when considering a charitable donation, but are faced with a narrow scope of organizations, personal misgivings, and difficulties throughout the entire donation experience.


Type of User
My research revealed two types of users:

1. Those who have donated to charitable groups
2. Those who have not donated to charitable groups

This solution is designed for both types of users, as the features and platform guidelines seek to alleviate the donation complications of both parties.

Project Scoping

Solution Framing

Intuitive + Flexible
platform should be easily navigable and should conveniently connect users with disposal and repair services
solution must be designed to holistically meet users informational needs
listed charities and transactions must be legitimate and secure so users feel comfortable when donating
Design Challenge
How might I alleviate people's donation misgivings and encourage them to give while simultaneously connecting underrepresented, diverse charities to a wider audience?  


Primary Features
Discover Page
Will show the user a list of randomized charitable organizations focused on a diverse array of issues, changing each time the user entered the application or manually, in order to expose the user to diverse issues and charities.
Flexible Search Bar
Flexible search feature allows users to search charity names, areas of focus, and locations via direct search or filters, creating a more streamlined and relevant search.
Secondary Features
Tracking System
Users will be able to keep account of their donation metrics (frequency, amount, etc.) to improve platform organization and perceived utility.
Organization Updates
Upon selection, the app will push non-intrusive reports periodically alerting the user on the activities of their selected charitable group, increasing organization legitimacy and improving the user's sense of impact.
Filtration System
After or before the user enters input a search query they’ll be able to further narrow down their options to certain specifications, increasing search efficiency.
Save Option
Users are able to save selected charities to their account, allowing them to efficiently and easily navigate charities of interest.
Share Option
Users will be able to share a link specific to charitable organizations and/or donation confirmations to draw attention to certain causes and encourage others to give.

Information Architecture

I designed information architecture to visualize how users could interact with this platform. This allowed me to identify how to best organize content and ensure effortless interaction.
Nunito Bold
Nunito Semi Bold
Nunito Normal


Initial Wireframes (Low-Fidelity)

Post ideation, I created a set of low-fidelity wireframes in Balsamiq to get a sense of the donation journey and charity discovery. These wireframes helped me decide how to manage the screen real estate and potential use cases.

Visual Language Decisions

  • I selected Nunito as the primary font due to it being a well balanced, highly-readable, and simple sans-serif typeface. The varying widths of Nunito created an information hierarchy that allowed for easy information traversal.
  • A combination of greys was used to improve readability and provide neutrality.
  • Yellow psychologically evokes a sense of optimism and happiness due to serotonin release. I accented with a blue, as the color is considered to promote emotions of trust and safety.
  • Color was used in specific areas to highlight information, provide contrast, or draw attention (e.g. CTA).

Final Design

After iterating on my low-fidelity frames, I designed a high-fidelity interactive prototype in Figma.

Home Interface

The first screen shows the user their saved charities and recent impact reports. The user would be able to view all saved charities and reports. My research indicated many users are time-pressed, so the estimated read time is listed on each impact report.

Discover Interface

The user is able to scroll through the discover page and manually refresh to view new charities. My research research revealed spontaneity and random introductions to charities often lead to donations, and thus a discover page is a strong addition. Additionally, some interviewees indicated a more structured search, hence the filter options.

Organization Interface

Users are able to view both a written description of an organization as well as verified metrics in this consolidated interface. Listed charities are verified by the HelpUp team, hence the blue check shield. From my research, having this comprehensive information easily accessible will save users time and increase trust.

Tracking Interface

This feature allows users to access their donation history, analytics, tax report, and donation settings. My research indicated that users value being able to access financial metrics related to their donations, which they can directly do through this platform.

Donation Interface

Users are able to select a predetermined donation value or input their own, with no minimum amount set. Having the ability to input micro-donations is a strong addition due to the alleviation of financial strain. Users may save a card to their account for future donations or user ApplePay or PayPal, all of which improve flow efficiency. The option to share your donation extends a charity to a larger audience for no extra cost.

Account Settings

Users may adjust their account preferences to their liking, making the app more personalized. My research indicated donors are often annoyed with follow-ups and unnecessary contact from charities, thus the ability to adjust notification settings is a helpful addition. Having a registered account creates a legitimate, secure environment for users to operate in.


One of the biggest challenges I faced was trying to integrate features or information that would alleviate the various misgivings people have about charitable organizations without causing information overload. If I were to continue on this project, I would conduct further research into the population of people who do not donate to charities in order to gain a deeper understanding of their mindset and adjust my design accordingly.

When dealing with such a diverse set of potential users, attempting to understand what motivates, triggers (internally), and frustrates such varied groups in regard to donations and then translating those findings into a mobile interface was a challenge. Conducting a thematic analysis was a new process for me, but proved to be a very insightful synthesis method.

I realized that going for an aesthetic UI too soon in the iteration phase instead of conducting multiple quick iterations, testing interactions and user flows, and making adjustments and corrections, is something I will continue to work on in the future.
ECD Maturity Tool

Thanks for stopping by, feel free to explore my other projects!