Raft

Resource Area for Teaching

RAFT provides creative ideas and one-on-one mentoring to more than 10,000 educators so they can prepare kids to meet 21st Century challenges.

RAFT came to ZURB with the goal to fix the broken message and broken interaction on their website. This fit part of a larger effort to get more of their organization online to expand the reach of their materials and efforts.

Buoyed by their efforts over the past year, RAFT is making their website the center of their growth plans. By continually working on the web and iterating on their site's content and messaging, they've grown more confident to invest in their future online.


The big wins

We set up a strategic plan and new website for RAFT.

  • Goal

    Setting strategic goals

    Working with the RAFT leads we were able to quickly brainstorm and decide on four critical goals for today's efforts and particularly for the website. They included:

    1. Build awareness by answering the simple who, what, where, when and how of RAFT.
    2. Position RAFT as innovators of 21st century teachings skills and materials.
    3. Strengthening their community of educators, volunteers, donors, and providers.
    4. Recreate more of the member experience online through networking and communication skills.
  • Website

    Website rewritten, restructured, redesigned

    Our most obvious effort was the visual redesign of the look and feel. The new design appeared simpler and more approachable at first glance and featured large imagery offset on top of a warm background reminiscent of the craft materialls at RAFT's hands-on learning facilities.

    But this visual change came on top of a radically restructured website that was simpler to grasp and navigate, as well as built with widespread SEO improvements to allow critical content to get indexed by Google. Once on the pages, people were greeted with an almost full rewrite of the site's copywriting that the team felt spoke more clearly and energetically of the program's purpose and benefits.

    From a technical perspective, we re-engineered the Idea Sheet search functionality as well as the interface for using it--a critical piece of RAFT's goal to connect members with better content online. For the rest of the site we took a "do no harm" approach and ended up maintaining a lot of existing features rather than tackle the complicated and risky job of removing them.

  • Newsletter

    Newsletter and social media

    When you are improving a website it is easy to overlook the related pieces that also communicate with customers. We raised the issue of the newsletter with RAFT and decided to dive in to help make it consistent with the new site's look and feel as well as tone of voice. To help make the newsletter and all RAFT communications more effective, we set it as part of a social media strategy we then coached them about engaging people and maintaining relationships through the blog, Facebook, Twitter and more. We set RAFT up with a suite of tools we find effective, including TweetDeck and Co-Tweet.

  • Annualreport

    Annual report, stickers, postcards

    One last component of our effort was an ambitious attempt to redesign their annual report for their upcoming presentations to stakeholders throughout the organization. This was a little crazy given the time constraints, but we managed to pull off a slim version with inserts and stickers showing off RAFT's recent success and charting a course for the new year! We even did postcards to send as 'Thank You's' for volunteers, just for good measure!


It was awesome just to play with some of the kits they provide. Only a little distracting from the event, but really cool. Jonathan Smiley, Designer, ZURB

8:00am

  • Kick off

    Everyone is excited to get started on creating amazing deliverables for RAFT.
  • Photobooth fun

    As an annual tradition, the team jumps in front of the camera for some photobooth fun
  • Team concepts

    The teams highlight opportunities they see in various aspects of the RAFT redesign.
  • Trip to RAFT

    Some of the team goes to check out RAFT to get inspired.
  • Keeping the content coming

    The teams are working along meeting their milestones and completing deliverables.
  • Print collateral and fun science

    Despite running behind schedule, the team stays focused on meeting their print deadlines.
  • Running the gauntlet

    All the teams are chugging along on their work.
  • The night is just the beginning

    As the night comes through, the teams begin finalizing their deliverables.
  • Wrapping up

    Once everything is delivered, the team celebrates alongside RAFT.

8:00am

What we accomplished:


It’s amazing to help an organization really communicate their value and general awesomeness. Matt Kelly, Engineer, ZURB

An inspired team got the win

RAFT (Resource Area for Teaching) was our winning nonprofit. They came to ZURB with the goal to fix the broken message and broken interaction on their website. This fit part of a larger effort to get more of their organization online to expand the reach of their materials and efforts.

Buoyed by their efforts over the past year, RAFT is making their website the center of their growth plans. By continually working on the web and iterating on their site's content and messaging, they've grown more confident to invest in their future online.

This is no small shift for them--their organization has always been anchored around hands-on learning at physical locations. It's amazing to think what the spark at Wired has turned in to for them since.


Want to be a part of Wired?

Volunteering means signing up for the full 24 hours, showing up on time, and committing to helping various team members out in a fluid schedule that will test your mettle throughout the day and night (and day again).

The people who have the most rewarding experiences are also the ones who contribute the most. Web, visual and print design skills are best. They are great at their craft, think quick on their feet, likable and motivated to help a non-profit and collaborate with ZURB.

    What we are looking for:

  • Hard Worker

    It takes a lot to go 24 hours straight.

  • Scrappy

    Be able to figure out how to do something

  • Team Player

    Be able to give helpful feedback

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Be this year's ZURB Wired nonprofit

Applying for your nonprofit means signing up for the full 24 hours, getting your team invested in showing up on time, and committing to helping various team members out in a fluid schedule that will test your mettle throughout the day and night (and day again).

    What we are looking for:

  • Hard Workers

    It takes a lot to go 24 hours straight.

  • Scrappy

    Be able to figure out how to do something

  • Team Players

    Be able to give helpful feedback

  • Having Fun

    Most important of all!

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We love local businesses!

Anything you can send to our efforts would be awesome. We really like goodies — cupcakes and coffee — to keep our volunteers fueled or help with getting our print materials ... well, printed.

Let us know how you can help

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