The 2019 Ambassador Teams Have Been Announced!   View Projects

Young people
changing the world.

An Innovative and Collaborative Experience

Design for Change equips young people to transform empathy into social action using 4 steps: Feel, Imagine, Do, Share.

Educators use DFC to facilitate a design process that fosters empathy and student agency.

Students brainstorm, plan, and execute community change projects.

Who:Middle school-aged students with an adult educator (teacher, parent, youth leader, coach, etc.)
What:Students work in teams to investigate social issues, brainstorm solutions, develop action plans, and implement their ideas. “Through” this process, they develop empathy, persistence, and resilience.
How:Educators guide students using the DFC methodology and dozens of free activities. Projects can range from 4 hours to weeks long.
When:Teams submit their projects to DFC by May 15, 2019. Each team has the opportunity to be selected to represent the United States at the annual Design for Change Global Conference, held in a different country each year.

Our Approach 

      1. We elevate the work of educators: Because we believe educators are designers, Design for Change equips all educators to be leaders in the design thinking process and provides them with tools, resources, training, and coaching in the DFC methodology.
      2. We support student-driven social impact: Educators facilitate each stage of the Feel, Imagine, Do, Share process, enabling students to respond and take action on a local issue they are passionate about.
      3. We connect to a global network: By participating in Design for Change, students join a coalition of young people creating social change around the world by designing solutions to address the UN Global Goals.

The Methodology



Teams gather information about a community challenge through research and interviews.



Teams work with community members to brainstorm points of possible solutions.



Teams develop and implement an action plan that results in lasting change.

The Global Connection

/dfcusa-web/app/webroot/img Every year, student teams from around the world submit their projects to Design for Change. An Ambassador Team is selected from each country to attend the DFC Global Conference. This conference brings together student teams from across the world to share and celebrate their solutions!

The conference has been held in India, China, Mexico, and Spain. In 2018, the conference was in Taipei, Taiwan. Explore the experiences of our students at the global conference in the videos below:

2018 Ambassador Team from Queens, NY
traveled to Taipei, Taiwan.
2017 Ambassador Team from Sandpoint, ID
traveled to Madrid, Spain.
2016 Ambassador Team from Raleigh, NC
traveled to Beijing, China.
2013 Ambassador Team from Pine Ridge, SD
traveled to Ahmedabad, India.