Code For Good Grand Rapids has been an annual non-profit event I have been attending since 2013. It is a three-day sprint from Friday evening to Sunday afternoon in which local non-profits will receive technology and marketing materials from volunteers. I've had the honor to be on seven different teams for various non-profits. I have been the project lead for four of these teams.
Community Food Club is a grocery store in Grand Rapids that provides for those who need assistance to provide food for their families. It differs from the traditional food pantry because those who shop there are given the dignity of the full shopping experience. From being able to freely walk around the store with a shopping cart to go through an actual checkout line.
After I was assigned the project and met with the client to go over the scope I requested five volunteers with various skill sets.
- Create a new easy-to-update website using current branding.
- Provide marketing direction and communication guidelines.
- Design marketing collateral for their various initiatives.
- Plan a social media calendar.
The scope seemed immense for a weekend project in where we only had 48 hours to complete the scope. Before the start of the event, I made sure the scope was turned into a design brief, along with high-level tasks so our team could quickly get to work.
My number one priority for the event was to make sure the client received their deliverables. Partially finishing anything we agreed upon would not serve the non-profit very well. So when I am put in the position of leading these projects, I make sure we only agree to what is possible. Extra asks by the client are always wishlisted and if time provides, we will try to complete these additional items.
In addition to leading the team, I also had to be productive in producing results. With the client's approval, I chose to use WordPress and the Elementor page builder to develop and design the website. For their needs and the constraints of the event, this choice made the most sense. Prior to the event I already had the staging environment for the website ready to go.
Late Friday with the consult of my team I started creating lo-fidelity prototypes of the website. In a three hour block the next day I went from lo-fi to a working prototype in WordPress. After shopping for feedback from my team we quickly had a design for the website we all felt good about. Meanwhile, the team was busy making sure the other items from the scope were being addressed.