Getting to Better

Welcome to Overlap's Getting to Better, our blog for stories, insights, and industry trends surrounding social innovation, capacity building, design thinking, and human-centred design.

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How a Social Worker Became a Human-Centred Designer

October 12, 2016

The Journey

I wonder what it's like?
I'm sure some people thought I was making a mistake. I had a great job with a great salary, a great pension and a great leader. I was doing work that I actually cared about. And yet with all of this, I kept thinking "I wonder what it's like to work at Overlap?"
 
But I'm not a designer, I'm a social worker!
I'm a clinical social worker and therapist by trade. I've worked in many different places and spaces doing clinical work and in leadership roles.  I've worked as a child welfare intake worker, as a network administrator, a sexual assault response team counsellor, as an LGBTQ public educator and recently as a 'system planner' in addictions and mental health. To me, it didn't always matter as much where I worked as long as I was having a positive impact and I was excited about the work. 
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Designing Better: a Case Study in Human-Centered Design

August 08, 2016


Human centered design is an immensely powerful concept and practice. Its power is illustrated in our recent project with the Canadian Mental Health Association Waterloo-Wellington-Dufferin, investigating how we might improve the system of mental health and addictions services for adults in the region.

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How Does Patient-Centred Design Work?

June 21, 2016

How do we create positive, lasting change in our patients' lives?

"The first thing we do is talk to lots of people. [Institutions] find this really scary—they don't always want to talk to their end users, because I think they're worried we might not be able to solve the problem. The thing is, you don't have to solve the problem. But you should recognize that it is a problem."

Watch Overlap's CEO Brock Hart share reflections and stories  at KW Counselling's AGM about his experiences driving patient-centred design. Thanks to KW Counselling for the opportunity to share!