Providing Legal Aid to Immigrants

I was approached by The Ahmadiyya Muslim Lawyers Association (AMLA), a nonprofit affiliated with my mosque, in late 2016 to create a website that helped them showcase their humanitarian efforts, increase member signups, and create awareness about the nonprofit to Muslim immigrants that could benefit from their help.

Designing Around Project Goals

AMLA asked me to create a website, and after some discovery, I found that they had two main business goals: increase their member count, and create awareness about their pro bono services.

Easy to Use

AMLA wanted an experience that focused on connecting people to attorneys that could help them. Didn’t want the fluff of typical non-profit websites. With that in mind I create a no-frills experience that made the site much more useful than pretty to look at.

Designing for Two Types of Users

Encouraging Attorneys to Join AMLA

Half of the reason do design this website was to allow for easy member registration. Attorneys that want to join AMLA would simply fill out basic info, and someone from AMLA would follow up with them to get more info and complete their registration.

AMLA mobile user registration
Mobile registration form

Member Spotlights

AMLA Member Spotlight
Member Spotlight to showcase members

Member Directory

AMLA member directory
The starting member directory

Events

AMLA events

Giving Immigrants Access to Legal Aid

The second part of this site involved allowing immigrants to quickly get set up with an AMLA member in their area and have access to resources such as blog articles and videos.

Blog

AMLA blog

Designing the Site

After gathering some other info, I set off to

Style Guide

AMLA website style guide
Style Guide for AMLA

Easy-to-Use Admin Control

(img: amla-spotlight.png alt: Wordpress Admin area caption: the easy-to-use wordpress area for the AMLA secretary to quickly change/update content.

Overcoming Challenges

Everyone had a full-time Job

This nonprofit is special in the sense that its entirely volunteer-based, and all the volunteers, including the board members, had full-time jobs. This delayed our progress a bit, but I knew this from the start, and set deadlines accordingly and take charge of project management.

Chain of Command

My main point of contact for this project was the executive secretary, who reported to the entire board.

Budget

Being a Muslim immigrant myself, this was a project I’m passionate about, and was happy to work with the budget they had, but this also meant we couldn’t afford certain design assets like premium fonts, and SSD hosting for quick-loading. Regardless, I worked within our bounds, and the project was a success.

End Result

The end result was a great looking and functioning site that helps AMLA get more members to join and muslim immigrants to get the legal aid they need.

Check out the live site at: http://www.amlausa.org .