Malala Fund and Airbnb share talents for website relaunch

Founded by education activist Malala Yousafzai, Malala Fund is tackling one of the greatest challenges facing the world today: Ensuring every girl around the world has access to free, quality and safe education.

“I tell my story not because it is unique, but because it is not. It is the story of many girls.”

– Malala Yousafzai,

For the organization, online presence is critical for advocacy efforts, community and government outreach, and amplifying girls’ stories. But a real challenge facing many nonprofits is the lack of resources dedicated to design and technology. “Our team is hugely ambitious and wants to present our work and girls’ stories in beautiful, innovative and vibrant formats,” says Taylor Royle, Malala Fund’s Chief Communications & Creative Officer. “[But] Malala Fund wants to put as much money as we can into programs that help girls go to school. That means we have a lot less [resources for] things like graphic design and web development.”

When considering updating their brand, Malala Fund reached out to Airbnb to form a unique creative partnership. “I believe companies in the 21st century have a responsibility to give back more than money – to give back strengths and talent to go solve for problems in the world,” says Airbnb co-founder and Malala Fund Leadership Council member Joe Gebbia. “So when Malala Fund said they needed help with branding, design and technology, for us it was a no-brainer to tap into our talent and resources and share that with their team.”

Airbnb encourages all employees to give back to causes they care most about by offering four hours of paid volunteer time per month. Utilizing their cumulative volunteer hours, Joe assembled a team of brand experts, designers, and engineers who were all passionate about Malala Fund’s mission and eager to get involved.

After months of brainstorming, research and assessment, the partnership culminated in a weeklong collaborative working session where designers and developers from both teams workshopped new ideas and directions for Malala Fund’s website and brand identity. “There was enough excitement and enthusiasm in the air that we knew, together, we’d come up with something great,” adds Joe.

One key area of focus was optimizing the donation experience on the website. “We looked at the donation experience like we look at our guest booking experience,” says Airbnb Product Lead Lenny Rachitsky. “How could we make it as easy as humanly possible to donate?”


“We’re excited for the world to see Malala Fund as the modern, professional, dynamic organization that we are.”

– Taylor Royle, Chief Communications & Creative Officer, Malala Fund

During the collaboration, the inspiration behind all the work remained clear: The more than 130 million girls around the world out of school. “Malala invited me on a trip to Kenya and Rwanda, and I really got to see firsthand the impact of girls being out of school,” says Joe. “I got to see the magic of Malala. [Her ability] to relate to these girls and listen to their concerns, and relay those concerns to heads of state — in that moment I knew I wanted to get involved.”

By leveraging the strengths and talents of both organizations, Malala Fund is now well-equipped with a state-of-the-art platform that will bolster its work to elevate girls’ voices and engage parents, community leaders, donors, governments, and future partners in Malala’s fight for a more equal world.

“We are so proud of what we created together,” says Taylor. “We’re excited for the world to see Malala Fund as the modern, professional, dynamic organization that we are.”

If you would like to support Malala Fund’s mission to help girls across the world get access to free, quality and safe education, make a donation today.

Donate to Malala Fund

And follow Malala Fund on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Special thanks to the following contributors from Malala Fund and Airbnb who dedicated their time and skills towards making the website redesign possible:

Lenny Rachitsky
Andrew Schapiro
Dillon Petrillo
Horace Ko
Vibha Bamba
Emily Zhao
Katie Dill
Derek Chan
Jason Mamaril
Kennan Cummings
Vero Maldonado
Michael Sui
Bridget Harris
Varun Pai
Jonathan Haring
Sara Reitenbach
Craig Wann
Hannah Orenstein
Taylor Royle
Tess Thomas
McKinley Tretler
Bhumika Regmi
Nicko Margolies

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