Design for Change (DFC)

UNICEF Winner
Design for Change (DFC) is a global movement that aims to empower students to say "I CAN" and inspire others by telling their own stories of change. The program has introduced its unique curriculum in over 30 countries worldwide and promotes design process as a way of encouraging students to create and develop solutions in their communities.
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Year launched: 
2009
Launch country: 

CEI Plus Status

Program Results Status
Monitoring and Evaluation Reporting
Primary Approach: 
Implementer: 
Design for Change
Education level (ISCED): 
Program Description: 
Design for Change (DFC) is a global movement that aims to empower students to say "I CAN" and inspire others by telling their own stories of change. The program promotes design process as a way of encouraging students to create and develop solutions for change in their communities and to put those ideas into action. Its unique curriculum has been introduced to some 30,000 schools in over 30 countries around the world.
 
The curriculum
Design thinking, a solution-based and user-centered approach to tackling problems, allows students to become active learners who guide their own education. Since its founding in 2009, DfC has worked to introduce design thinking in the education sector in a way that is accessible for children. DFC weaved students' own stories back into education by designing a year-long curriculum. Students begin to develop the design mindset while engaging in real-world problems, in turn activating and developing skills and attitudes, such as a sense of well-being, problem-solving, and other 21st century skills. The curriculum is designed to be plugged into existing school calendars and enhance academic learning.
 
The model
  1. Feel: Students identify problems in their classrooms, schools, and communities. Students observe problems and try to engage with those who are affected, discuss their thoughts in groups, and vote on an idea.
  2. Imagine: Students envision and develop creative solutions that can be replicated easily, reach the maximum number of people, generate long-lasting change, and make a quick impact.
  3. Do: Students develop a plan of action to effect change. This includes planning, implementing, and later recording the process.
  4. Share: Students submit their stories to DFC through text, photos, video, or slideshows and are encouraged to to do so with other schools in the community and local media, as well.
 
As a part of the DFC program, children have chosen to tackle a number of issues plaguing their communities, such as waste management, school infrastructure, health awareness, special needs, personal hygiene, learning aids, and gender equality.
 
How it operates
Design for Change works with all actors: with both private and government-run schools as well as NGOs that operate in tribal or more remote areas. The program is free for schools and run individually at the country-level. While sponsors contribute initial funding and materials, each program runs independently. DFC conducts design thinking workshops for teachers, provides technical support with websites and the online community, and selects and shares inspiring stories from participants. DFC won a Rockefeller Foundation Innovation Award in 2012.
 
Design for Change is one of the 10 Champions of the LEGO Foundation and Ashoka's Re-Imagine Learning Challenge.