The Salvation Army
Collaboration with Central Saint Martins, UAL
Role: Product Designer
“I used to think everything was my own fault.
I’m just learning it wasn’t all just me.”
Interactive design for Salvation Army's clothing banks
We worked with the Salvation Army to find a new innovative way for people to donate their clothing. We wanted to draw attention to the great work they do by showing how donating unwanted clothing will help some of the most vulnerable people in today's society. Our interactive clothing bank shows the user how their donation directly benefits people in need.
Visit the Salvation Army clothing bank website
Each year The Salvation Army collects around 30,000 tonnes of donations from its 6,500 clothing banks, raising nearly 10 million pounds. Profits help fund the vital work of the charity whose network provides valuable social welfare support, which includes homelessness and addiction services, care for the elderly, help at emergency incidents and care for adult victims of human trafficking.
Most people are not aware how important clothing donation is to enable the amazing work The Salvation Army does. They wanted to make people more aware of this in the hope they can increase donation and increase their impact.
We first spent time developing a deep understanding for all the work The Salvation Army is involved in. We did this by volunteering at one of their centres for the homeless and vulnerable community, and one of their over 60's lunch clubs. We also visited a home for vulnerable young people, and looked behind the scenes of their recycling lines and clothing bank production.
We worked closely with The Salvation Army to design and prototype several options for the new clothing bank. Eventually, we continued with 'The Measure'. This design displays what the charity can provide through people's donations. The bank lights up with each donation it receives, directly showing the user how their donation enables the Salvation Army's work. For example; when the bank is 3/4 full, it can fund 25 weekly parent and toddler groups where disadvantaged children can play in a safe environment. Small LED lights illuminate one-by-one as the bank fills up. This gives the sense that it's a community effort to fill the bank and that it directly enables the TSA to do their important work in your own community.
The new designs have been produced and put to use in several locations in the UK, like London and Manchester. The SA are planning to spread the banks to many more locations in the UK.
"The final artwork reflects The Salvation Army’s strong and steeped belief in providing light where there is darkness."