Cards for humanity - Journal | Strategic Design Consultancy | Folk



Cards for humanity
Celebrating Beyond Sticky Notes’ new Model of Care for Co-design Expansion Pack

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A couple of weeks ago, Lou, Folk’s Experience Design Director, and I were invited to celebrate the launch of Beyond Sticky Notes’ new Model of Care for Co-design Expansion Pack.

In a room full of people hand-picked by KA McKercher (Proprietor of Beyond Sticky Notes and co-author of the Pack), we were happily surrounded by designers, co-design practitioners, people from health services and general co-design enthusiasts. We spoke about safety, care, and transparency and shared thoughts about the courageous conversations co-design asks us to have – with ourselves, our clients, and the people we’re collaborating with.

The feature of the night was a first-look at the 26 new beautifully designed and illustrated cards, each with a new technique for inclusive, ethical and careful co-design. The packs of cards were spread across two long tables for all of us to read, arrange, play with and reflect on in conversation over drinks.

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Two of our favourites, both authored by Sue Muller, are ‘name the work honestly and ‘name the work together’. Together, the cards encourage us to “be curious about what the people involved say the work is,” being honest about how people can be and are involved, and making sure we only call it co-design when it’s co-design.

Co-design is all about designing with, not for. It’s a shift in our research and projects that lets decision-making powers lie with those affected by them. It’s about marrying up good intentions around inclusivity, safe participation and transparency with good practice, supporting people to participate in the design of services and systems that have historically caused them harm.

Another one of our favourites is ‘acknowledge your place in wider systems’, by Morgan Cataldo. It draws our attention to that bigger-picture thinking that affects us and those we’re designing with. When we’re seeking to change systems, or when we’re working within them, we need to understand them and the barriers that affect the people we may be designing with.

It was wonderful to see KA again and celebrate their work. It was also great to see, hug and speak with other good people in the room. Even more, we appreciated the opportunity to keep listening and learning. We left the launch the same way we arrived – with big smiles on our faces and excitement about the future of practicing with care.

You can read more about how the Pack was made and how to use it on the Beyond Sticky Notes website. If you’d like to see some snaps from the night, check out KA’s LinkedIn.

Written by:
Mel Stenner,
Strategic Designer