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Everyone is welcome at our table
Sacred Heart Mission
It all starts with a welcome, a meal, a relationship…
Who are Sacred Heart Mission

Sacred Heart Mission (SHM) is a Melbourne-based non-for-profit. Since ‘82 the organisation has supported people experiencing homelessness, as well as the many complex challenges that can surround this stage of one’s life. Such as violence, lack of food & income and impacted mental health. If you are not familiar with the wonderful daily in-person meal services in St Kilda, you may have seen (or even browsed) one of their 13 Op Shops that are placed in Melbourne’s surrounding suburbs. Their dedicated team of both paid staff and volunteers continue to champion inclusivity and help people in a meaningful way.

The challenge

SHM’s website is a key point of connection for the diverse range of people who interact with the organisation.

The solution

SOD was tasked to create a website experience that is inclusive, accessible, supportive and just plain useful for these different people with different goals.

Discovery

We kicked off the project with a discovery workshop. A half-day, facilitated session made up of our UX Design team and then several of the SHM team who together, held a holistic, expert knowledge of the organisation.

Sacred Heart Mission (SHM) is a Melbourne-based non-for-profit. Since ‘82 the organisation has supported people experiencing homelessness, as well as the many complex challenges that can surround this stage of one’s life. Such as violence, lack of food & income and impacted mental health. If you are not familiar with the wonderful daily in-person meal services in St Kilda, you may have seen (or even browsed) one of their 13 Op Shops that are placed in Melbourne’s surrounding suburbs. Their dedicated team of both paid staff and volunteers continue to champion inclusivity and help people in a meaningful way.

Wireframing & Prototyping

Key pillars of user-centered design for the SHM website

User-centered navigation

How might we create a ‘client-first’ navigation for the website?

Engaging browse experience

Explore Op-Shop pages that embrace diversity and encourage discovery

Streamlined donation flow

Create a seamless, familiar and trustworthy donation experience

Foster community connections

Nurture existing community relationships (volunteers & donors)

Easy access to FAQs

Create accessible paths to content answering ‘common questions’

Empower staff

Freeing the SHM team members up to focus on more urgent work

Our research uncovered that it was often someone like a Caseworker using the website on behalf of a potential client.

These were 7 individuals who held a valuable amount of experience in helping connect people to information that would help their, often urgent, situation.

User research

Participants were given a series of scenarios and tasks and asked a series of open-ended questions about the prototype.

Insights were gained

Patterns emerged, insights were gained.

Adjustments were made

Our experts pointed out a few features that needed tweaking, but for the most part, users achieved their tasks quickly, with ease.

Confidence moving into design

We were able to move into the design-rollout and development with further clarity.

The outcome is a digital experience that is beautifully accessible in both its aesthetics and usability.

A content website that provides useful information to those who are seeking help and to those who want to get involved or donate. It creates paths & increased awareness for the Op Shops — an essential financial support for the organisation.

Finally, from an internal perspective, an improved CMS and site structure just makes the life of the SHM team easier. Allowing the website to not be a burden, but a useful resource so everyone can get on with the important stuff, helping people who need it.

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