The Call to Ministry
Mobility Worldwide is a faith-based, volunteer-powered, humanitarian, and world-wide organization that began in 1994 with one humble mission: to bring the gift of mobility and dignity to those in developing countries around the world who are unable to walk.
The organization sparked into existence when Reverend Larry Hills, a missionary in Zaire (now Congo), informed Reverend Mel West of the need for three-wheeled, hand-cranked wheelchairs for victims of polio and landmines. Mel took immediate action, contacting his long-time friend and mission partner, Earl Miner, to start right away on a prototype design.
When the prototype was ready for field testing, four carts were shipped to Reverend Hills with explicit instructions to “put these in the worse place you can find, and see if they pass the test.” That’s exactly what Larry did, and the Mobility carts performed exactly the way Mel had hoped. At that moment, a worldwide mission was born.
As a Central Missouri native, Mel has served a majority of his life as a social conscience for Columbia by leading and contributing to a number of community organizations and projects. In 2000, his philanthropy fueled the launch of a full Mobility cart production and shipping & receiving facility here in town, receiving parts made and donated by volunteers and businesses.
Since then, it’s grown into a full-fledged international organization consisting of 21 affiliates united by a single vision: to help those struggling with immobility throughout the world. And while each affiliate is its own non-profit organization responsible for their own funding, marketing and cart assembly and distribution, they all wanted to come together under a global name to gain more awareness. Putting this “umbrella” over all of the affiliates accomplished their goal for global unity. However, when they applied the same ideology to their online presence, the resulting website just wasn’t getting their message across the way they had planned.
With such an inspiring mission, what the organization’s leaders wanted (and needed) was a website to represent how Mobility Worldwide truly improves the lives of so many people. One that would create an instant emotional connection with its visitors. Not just with their respective internal audiences but with new visitors who may not have heard of Mobility Worldwide.
Unfortunately, uniting all of the affiliate websites into one main site resulted in something that felt pieced-together and looked, simply put, dated and underwhelming.
Not to mention many affiliates felt the unified structure was causing them to miss out on donations from their visitors. This was because the main site had a Donate button in the header taking visitors to the main organization’s donation page while the Donate buttons on the affiliate pages lead visitors to the respective affiliate donation page. This wasn’t obvious to visitors, so when they clicked on the Donate button in the site’s main header, the international organization was receiving the donation instead of the affiliate. No bueno.
So, when Mobility Worldwide came to us for a solution to their online woes, we offered a vision for their site that would look and feel as impressive as the work they do and also correctly direct donation traffic to the appropriate affiliate donation pages.
Our “Big Picture” Goal: design a website that would strike a chord with visitors and create a nearly instantaneous emotional connection while maintaining a professional look.
So, how’d we do it?
The goal in mind when designing the new Mobility Worldwide website was to focus on the ways having a Mobility cart has improved lives rather than on the recipients’ misfortunes or handicaps. The uplifting color scheme we chose in turn creates an exciting, positive and revitalizing feel, drawing visitors in so they want to learn more instead of feeling obligated to read through the pages.
We used several modern design techniques to make the new website feel like the outstanding international organization Mobility Worldwide has evolved into, including:
We reprogrammed the affiliate landing pages to act as home pages for each affiliate, essentially creating “mini websites” for each affiliate using only one template rather than creating separate websites for each one. What’s more is when a visitor clicks on an affiliate page from the main site, the website navigation shifts to that of the affiliate’s site.
How crazy cool is that? (Hint: It’s pretty crazy cool…Like, when we figured out how to make that happen we basically felt like we were the coolest people we know.)
During our journey, we also uncovered a solution for an improved donation page. Due to the issue of “misplaced” donations on the old site, we put blocks in place to ensure when people get to affiliate pages, they are a captive audience. Meaning the main donation link in the header takes visitors to the appropriate affiliate donate page. Eliminating funding slipping through the cracks — now it gets where it needs to go.
Other impressive features on the new Mobility Worldwide website include:
Does your website design lack a connection with your audience, or do you just need a site in general? Contact the team at MayeCreate Design. We believe websites work when good design meets solid functionality. Our web designs always aim for ease of use and clear communication. Check out our portfolio for a look at our other projects and to get your pride on…today.
Katie is a Designer & Content Developer at MayeCreate Design. Her responsibilities and experience include content development for websites and online marketing, blogging, general website maintenance, graphic design, ad campaign management, project management, office management, bookkeeping, and customer service. As a wife, mom, twin, seasoned karaoke singer and amateur rock climber, she’s seen the world from many perspectives and thrives to bring an open mind and clear vision to her position here at MayeCreate.