Started in 2009, 10% Time is my commitment to giving away a portion of my time (10%) as a designer.
Q: In difficult times like these, how can you afford to work for free?
A: Because these are difficult times, that’s why. While times may be tough for me and people like me, they are certainly more difficult for social services organizations, non profits and those who dedicate themselves to making a difference. They operate with modest resources and with staff who are responsible for wearing all the hats.
I have said this before, but designers have a responsibility. If we don’t put aside profit margins and pitch in to help do some good, we fall short of proving the full value of ourselves as designers. If we consider the value of design thinking and what it can do for others – and fail to give it freely – we miss out on the opportunity to make things better. There are many who need help, and as designers it’s our responsibility to seek them out and lend a hand. We think in ways others won’t. We have skills others don’t. “If not us, then who?” I ask.
As a designer, I have become increasingly aware of my surroundings and have expended a great deal of energy making long lists of the kinds of projects I truly feel drawn to – where I see opportunities to directly impact the lives of others. Most of them are those for organizations who find themselves in difficult positions or with limited resources. Paradoxically (and sadly), these are generally the organizations that people need the most. They are extremely important – even critical – to those they serve.
Put simply, we need these organizations to thrive, and I have committed 10% of my time to helping them do just that. And I will do it for free.
These projects will be selected carefully and the expectations are to be clearly defined from the outset.
Who fits the description of a 10% Time candidate?
Past 10% Time recipients include:
- Mt. Lebanon, PA (2012, 2013)
- Sisters of the Holy Spirit (2010 – 2012)
- Greater Harmony Chorus (2010)
- Emmanuel Christian Church (2009)
If you think your organization or project fits this description, please let me know »
PLEASE NOTE THAT SUBMISSIONS ARE NOW CLOSED FOR 2013.
Feel free to send me a note and let me know about your project, though.