Changemakers – July 2013

At Designed Good, we’re all about empowering you with the stories behind how people and products are making a difference.

It’s incredible to hear about how organizations, companies, initiatives, and programs get built through hard work, vision, and passion. Each month, we will share some of the most inspiring stories about people from our community who are making waves of impact through projects they love.

If you know someone who should be featured in next month’s issue, please send an email to with that person’s name, their contact info, and a brief description of their project. We’ll be in touch!

In the meantime, get inspired and cheer on our Changemakers! Here’s our list for July!

Changemaker Jenna Hussein: ICO Football Initiative

Jenna Hussein: ICO Football Initiative

Bio: Vancouverite, Claremont McKenna College Junior, Political Columnist. Passionate about international development. Connect with Jenna on Twitter @jennahussein.

Project: I manage and direct the global initiative to provide at-risk youth with opportunities to play soccer. I have recruited a team to plan and execute soccer camps and tournaments in developing countries including Kenya, Tanzania and Guatemala. We aim to harness the power of sport to empower disadvantaged youth and encourage positive community development. For more information, check out our Facebook page:

Favorite Designed Good Product: Tortoise Shell Bamboo Sunglasses. Preventable blindness is a significant problem, which is especially prevalent in the developing world. This disability prevents people from being able to contribute to their communities, and

also places a burden on their family members who must take care of them. These sunglasses are stylish and perfect for summer, and I love that with the purchase of each pair, one person will receive a pair of reading glasses and another will receive funding for a portion of a cataracts surgery.


Changemaker Walter Cruz: Listen Art Shows

Walter Cruz: Listen Art Shows

Bio: Music enthusiast. Dreamer. Creator. Collaborator. Inspired by all things. Fan of Basquiat. Aspiring social innovator. Break the mold with me.

Project: My current project is the “Listen” art shows. They are non-traditional art exhibits that force guests to think critically on both an intellectual and sensory level. The first show was focused on having guests realize that listening is an act that may involve more than one sense and when fully engaged it allows guests to create new stories. I’m also in the final stages of co-creating a new arts collective whose partial focus is on providing start-up funds for teens interested in designing their own arts-related projects. Real progress is when we all progress. Lets progress together!

For more information or collaboration inquiries, please contact me at, and don’t forget to check out my website!

Favorite Designed Good Product: Far & Wide Kufic Calligraphy Print – Afghanistan (Limited Edition). I’ve always been a fan of artwork/design that incorporates multiple layers of meaning into a single item. Between the Fabiano paper and the Afghan calligraphy, different histories and traditions are able to coexist on a single cloth. The perfect meld of art and design. Good eye Designed Good!


Changemaker Lisa Benson: Chronic Migraine Awareness

Lisa Benson: Chronic Migraine Awareness

Bio: I am a lifetime artist, learner of new and interesting things, and community volunteer. As a recent grad from New York Academy of Art, I focus on sculpting with clay and plaster using traditional methods and designing and drawing with Photoshop. I work at Skylight Studios, Inc. in Woburn, MA collaborating with the design and execution of memorials, monuments, and sculpture restoration. In late 2011, I suddenly started to suffer from severe chronic migraines. I worked hard to educate myself and navigate the medical world to find effective treatment for my condition. I have improved tremendously, and now I focus on helping others in the migraine community. I like to inspire and educate using art, graphics, and writing.

Project: My project is Chronic Migraine Awareness. We are an organization of patients helping patients based online of over 1000 members and counting. We strive to spread awareness of this debilitating disease which affects all aspects of our lives, and we seek to impart support and education to our members and the medical community in order to enrich their ability to successfully manage life as an individual with chronic migraine. We provide materials useful for patients, research different treatments, send care packages and letters to members in need, and run multiple support groups for members to connect and seek advice. Chronic Migraine Awareness day is June 29th. Learn more at

Favorite Designed Good Product: Babson Social Innovation Duffel because I love seeing Designed Good collaborate with another entity for mutual benefit. Also, my husband is enrolled to start in their Business Entrepreneur program this fall and this bag simply and elegantly captures what he is hoping to achieve with his degree.


Changemaker Phil Drolet: The Feel Good Lifestyle

Phil Drolet: The Feel Good Lifestyle

Bio: Founder of The Feel Good Lifestyle, I live to inspire and be inspired, amplify my talents and others’, and do it all with a smile.

Project: The Feel Good Lifestyle is a blog designed to help its readers be more confident, take massive action towards their dreams, and make the most of each day. We aim to make personal development accessible, fun, and effective. Check us out at

Favorite Designed Good Product: Barnabas Men’s Anchor Tee – I love the idea of using clothing as a way to spread inspiration!


Changemaker Lisa Curtis: Kuli Kuli

Lisa Curtis: Kuli Kuli

Bio: A social entrepreneur and writer, Lisa is the founder & CEO of Kuli Kuli, the Communications Director for Mosaic and is a freelance writer for Forbes and other outlets. Previously, Lisa wrote political briefings for President Obama in The White House, served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Niger and managed communications for an impact investment firm in India.

Project: Kuli Kuli makes superfood bars with a mission to feed the world. These bars connect people in the US in search of nutritious food to those in the developing world who need it through moringa, the most nutrient-rich plant on the planet. By working closely with women’s cooperatives in West Africa to source moringa, Kuli Kuli incentivizes those communities to grow and consume more of it. Kuli Kuli believes in a world where malnutrition can only be found in history textbooks. Plus, the bars are absolutely delicious. Try them for yourself and learn more at

Favorite Designed Good Product: Tots on Pot Print as it reminds me of my time as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Niger, West Africa. I was constantly surrounded by adorable children who would chant my name every time I walked down the street. I miss those kids!


Changemaker Andrew Karp: Centre for Social Innovation (NY)

Andrew Karp: Centre for Social Innovation (NY)

Bio: Serial connector, social impact born again, pun appreciator. Can be found facilitating interactions IRL @csiSL, or biking around Brooklyn.

Project: My project is supporting the Centre for Social Innovation in New York, its members, and anyone else who wants to innovate space. We’re a coworking space, incubator, and community hub for all things good. I help connect people and organizations, to continue the conversation online, and then create impact offline. Tap in @

Favorite Designed Good Product: I love the Tots on Pots Print. The kid on the far left is just having the time of his life and I smile every time I see it. On top of that, 100cameras is an incredible organization bringing the tools for creative expression to marginalized communities (plus they’re residents in our space at CSI!).


Changemaker Zheela Qaiser

Zheela Qaiser: Open for Business

Bio: Zheela Qaiser is a writer, technologist, designer and lifelong learner. Her passion is interdisciplinary collaboration, to create work that is larger than individuals. @zheeq

Project: Zheela Qaiser is working on “Open for Business”, an immigration film documenting the challenges inherent in retaining foreign talent to generate innovation, businesses, and jobs in the U.S. The film aims to humanize the issue and understand the individuals involved. The trailer and kickstarter campaign can be seen here:

Favorite Designed Good Product: Indosole Sandals – because they are a great product in and of themselves but also because they are made from landfilled tires in Bali. This means that those sandals provide craftsmen in Bali with employment and also reduce pollution by reusing materials that would otherwise litter the streets and streams. That’s a great mission and a great result.

We’re accepting nominations for people to be featured in next month’s issue. Please send an email to with that person’s name, their contact info, and a brief description of their project. We’ll be in touch!


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