Design Can Play A Critical Role In Making Complex Social Topics Accessible
Created in collaboration with San Francisco design studio Landscape, The Kelsey has launched a new brand identity that signals its disability-inclusive approach to housing and its community partnerships. The Kelsey is a non-profit that centers on the lived experience of people with disabilities to innovate multifamily housing that is affordable and inclusive.
The new identity needed to signal the organization’s progress and engage a broad set of potential partners. Centered around the idea of “building opportunity through inclusivity,” the new identity grounds the organizations’ work in creating opportunity that benefits people of all backgrounds and positions it as a credible organization that brings together diverse communities, funders, and policymakers for positive change.
The visual execution reinforces inclusion through whimsical illustrations, bold, universal typeface selection, and a color palette based on a variety of skin tones. Complementary photography portrays the lived experience of people with disabilities and conveys the power of their ideas, actions and voices.
“Design – which includes language – can play a critical role in making complex social topics accessible to broader audiences,” says Adam Weiss, creative director of Landscape. “But as importantly, good design also makes these topics easier to act on for everyone, inspiring more diverse groups of people to participate in positive social movements or changes. In the case of The Kelsey, designing for inclusivity also meant designing for and with people who have disabilities. Our team worked with disability advocates and external consultants to ensure that the design of the brand and site, from the user experience to colors, images, and words was designed to be as accessible as possible to people with a broad range of abilities.”
Adds Micaela Connery, Co-founder and CEO of The Kelsey: “Too often beauty is dictated and is reserved for the select few, and not inclusive of the communities they serve. We don’t believe that should be the case.”