SUPPORTING COMMUNITY CURRENCY IMPLEMENTATION & FUNDING
NOVEMBER '21 - CURRENT
Grassroots Economics has designed an alternative currency system that allows for communities to issue their own currencies backed by their communal goods and services as a way to develop financial resilience in marginalised populations and motivate circular local economies. Their digital Community Inclusion Currency program uses blockchain technology and can be complicated to understand and communicate. We worked on their communications strategy to donors, and the program’s legal and structural design.
A non-profit foundation that seeks to empower marginalised communities to take charge of their own livelihoods and economic future. They focus on community development through economic empowerment and are dedicated to helping communities realise and share their abundance.
We are a strategy and communications partner to Grassroots Economics – using the tools of organisational development, storytelling and product design.
Community Inclusion Currencies (CICs) are an unknown concept to most donor organisations and can be complicated to explain. Grassroots Economics has a lot of content to explain the concept and their current programs, but little of it is cohesive and efficient at communicating to donors the value of CICs as a developmental and humanitarian aid tool.
We spent time with Will Ruddick, the founder of Grassroots Economics and the mind behind the currency design of Community Inclusion Currencies (CICs), in order to understand the project and problem. We engaged with users, immersed and observed the product in action, read many papers, asked many questions and eventually mapped out the architecture of the CIC program system on whiteboards to test our understanding of it. Through mapping the currency system we began to develop a terminology deck and visualisation of the program/system design, creating a foundation from which we could develop communications material.
RESEARCH | IMMERSION | OBSERVATION | WORKSHOPS SYSTEMS THINKING | PROCESS VISUALISATION | LEGAL LITERACY
Following on from our time spent in Kenya, we provided communications advice and content, a terminology deck and a system blueprint document. The advice spoke to strengths and weaknesses in the current communications and suggested ways of improving on that. The content included explainer videos on the foundation and their CIC program, and an infographic directed to donors that communicated the use case for CICs and Syntropic Agroforestry training as a tool for humanitarian and developmental aid. The system blueprint document, which integrated the terminology deck, acted as a process document to understand the program design and structure and continues to be used as a live document in our work with the foundation.
“I absolutely love working with the OCTOPI ladies. They are very much plugged into the tech space and understand user journeys, UX and branding journeys. Their focus on effective storytelling for impact was super in line with our impact projects. Seeing as our business has several models, several audiences and several contributors – it was quite refreshing for them to break it down and help us document our MVP to the greater audience. I look forward to doing more great work with them in the future.”