Guest Post: How to Make Infographics That Change the World

By Amanda Ingrassia, Charlotte Awake

 “They’re dirty.”

“They’re uneducated.”

“They’re stealing our jobs.”

Again and again, we were hearing the same things. Sometimes to our faces. Sometimes in news stories. Sometimes a few tables over at a coffee shop. Sweeping generalizations at best, and outright lies at worst. And they were hurting us. All of us: native-born Americans and resettled refugees alike.

We needed a correction. We needed grounded, honest information to help address the misconceptions. And it needed to be easy to digest, easy to share, and packaged to reach people who didn’t even know they needed it.

We needed infographics.

So we began. We created an infographic answering the questions, “What do you mean when you say, ‘I work with refugees? What exactly is a refugee?’”

It took us 3 months. We used it constantly. Our partners asked for copies. We needed more.

At the end of 2014, we reached out to the TLC Project. With their financial support, we dove headfirst into creating eight more infographics. We sat on couches and listened as men and women shared their stories. We drank unhealthy amounts of coffee and combed journals late into the night for just the right pieces of data to refute the misunderstandings. We drafted, tweaked, rejected, restarted, tested, refined, and polished countless images. And leading up to World Refugee Day in 2015, we released them via our social media accounts.

We had account followings of less than 500. But we were optimistic. We were determined. We set our goal at 10,000 infographic views by the end of our campaign.

The campaign lasted roughly 5 weeks.

By the end, we had reached over 317,000 people.

We wanted to equip ourselves and our partners with tools to help make our state a better place. We did that, but we also equipped people we’ve never met, in places we’ve never been. That was exciting. Who knew a small nonprofit in Charlotte, North Carolina could reach so far?

As the nation continues to struggle with fear and misinformation about refugee resettlement, infographics provide a clear and inexpensive way to share accurate and reassuring information in our states and the people whose lives are impacted by the program.

Why not make (or share) one today?

To get an inside look at our project, as well as access our social media “how to” guides, visit

Download the infographics at

Charlotte Awake is a faith-based, refugee assistance group in Charlotte, North Carolina. They received a grant from The Linking Communities Project in 2015 to create successful, narrative-driven infographics that tell the stories of local refugee families and share facts about refugee contributions to communities.

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