28.9.2021 Need

Rise: On a mission to empower refugee women.

Teaching practical, hands-on hospitality skills – from qualifications in food hygiene, to CV writing, to real customer service experience – Rise breaks down employment barriers for refugee women in Scotland.


As well as improving opportunities for women who are at risk of being left behind, the team brings a cultural melting pot of food to the people of Scotland – sharing recipes and dishes from across the globe at events, cafes and their very own supper clubs.


During 2020, strategic design practice Need helped to uplight Rise’s presence and public perception – culminating in an updated brand, tone of voice, website and range of digital assets.


Collaborating with founder Helen, Need worked on avoiding the trap of taking a soft approach to social enterprise. Instead, the team took inspiration from suffragette activism signage and the idea of community – showing up, and lifting up.


This ethos informed the creative direction the team took – from a call to arms that centres around equipping, enabling and empowering, to a bold typeface based on protest posters from the suffragette movement. Paired with a bright, unapologetic palette, the brand has a sense of strength, a feeling of flavour and a touch of playfulness.


As Need’s charity partner, the work the team did for Rise wasn’t about slapping logos onto things – it was about functional design that got them results. Rise needed to hit the ground running. They needed easy-to-use, high-impact outputs with long-lasting usability that wouldn’t require endless budget to implement. They needed their digital presence to work for them – letting them focus on the amazing work they’re doing for refugee women.


The immediate results for Rise after project completion were incredible to see:
– Over 35k of funding received
– Social media engagement and website traffic tripled
– Huge amounts of positive feedback from the community
– Long-term digital sustainability for the team


You can follow and support Rise at www.riseglasgow.org.uk and @riseglasgow.


Rise founder, Helen Russel said:
“We’re excited to continue to grow and move into the next phase of Rise with our amazing new brand and website. Working with Need has been an absolute joy! They’re great at listening, communicating and are endlessly creative. We are totally thrilled with the work they’ve done so far, and the response has been incredibly positive.”


Need founder, Laura Thomson said:
“When choosing our charity partner for the year, there was absolutely no way we couldn’t select Rise. The passion Helen has is second to none, she’s one of the most hard-working, caring, inspiring women I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. There’s no doubt Rise will continue to go from strength to strength, positively impacting the lives of many more refugee women. What a pleasure it’s been to play a very small role in that journey.”


Need is an emerging strategic design practice based in Glasgow and founded in 2020. They focus on figuring out what a business really needs, and form beautiful creative to get relevant results. Now a team of four, they’ve just moved into a studio at the Barrowlands in the city’s east end, where they’re collaborating with cultural clients who do good in the world. With a website soon to be launched, you can find out a little bit more about them at www.needthinking.com and @needthinking



Laura Thomson
Ed Watt
Claudia Miquel
Joanna Hughes