Changing the world, one experience at a time

Changing the world, one experience at a time

Started by Craig and Marc Kielburger, WE is a movement that brings people together and gives them the tools to change the world. Their family of organizations empowers people at home, around the world and with their social enterprise, ME to WE.

Project: WE - CF Toronto Eaton Centre, Toronto, Ontario

Interior Designer: Andrew Gallici, ARIDO; Bradley Marks, ARIDO

Design Firm: Designstead

Photographer: Ben Rahn, A-Frame

Inside
Photo credit: Ben Rahn, A-Frame

ME to WE creates socially conscious products and experiences that allow people to do good through their everyday choices. In addition, ME to WE offers hands-on experiential trips for youth, families, and corporations, where participants and communities partner and learn from each other.

When approached by the passionate team at WE.org to design a retail space for them, it became evident that a typical “store” would not suffice. Coined the “experience hub”, WE became a larger-than-life experience that would figuratively burst out of the small 490 sq.ft. premises. The concept had to embody and manifest all the energy of WE Day, the passion and gregarious personality of their celebrity ambassadors and all the color, charm and texture of their Me to We accessories that encourage people to change the world with their consumer choices.

Inside
Photo credit: Ben Rahn, A-Frame

This space is designed to be the evolving and experiential amplifier of all WE.org initiatives; a WE “billboard” in CF Toronto Eaton Centre – a mall teeming with millions of the charity’s core demographic. Our sweet spot is the millennial: for whom retail and engagement is fundamentally different than for many people.

Dynamic technology is paired to a humble plywood box. The design maximizes LED flat screens to inspire, interact, educate and envelop passersby in hopeful messaging, such as the “Pledge Wall” that greets people upon entry – engaging consumers to simply tap and give the gift of fresh water to a community. This juxtaposition sets the stage for a curious and compelling invitation to explore.

Inside
Photo credit: Ben Rahn, A-Frame

The environment is designed to feature and highlight the artisan-designed product range that is forever evolving and adapting to consumer trend and category diversity and growth. The whole environment is designed to change and adapt: immersive digital merchandising allows for storytelling to change as required.

Digital media and hardware are segmented into zones that focus on pledges, donations, artisan handicraft, and the trips and experiences Me to WE organises. Participation is augmented by an immersive virtual reality experience, which shows visitors Africa, India or the other exotic locales.

Inside
Photo credit: Ben Rahn, A-Frame

Plywood boxes provide some secondary storage, or when flipped and paired with a seat pad - become seating during events and demonstrations. The central anchor in the space is a large communal table and bench – a merchandise bazaar one moment or a learning table the next.

The unique art installation above the bazaar table was commissioned by a local artist to mimic the materiality and personality of the store while highlighting their most iconic product, the “Rafiki” beaded bracelet.

Focused on the highest level of human experience; the space that designed to be as responsive as the WE.org movement. A multi-media amphitheater, a store, an assembly space, a classroom – the WE Store is an adaptive space that appeals to dynamic millennials and anyone else on a mission to make this world a better place: a space where together we change the world.

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