Arrive is an online forum that provides personalized information recommendations, articles, and local services for recently immigrated families with kids.

Project Objective

This project was originally from our Design research class taught by Amy Bickerton. We conducted research in teams to help our client, The Neighbor Project, and identified effective ways to increase community engagement in the Potrero neighborhood (San Francisco). I took this research project from that class, and designed Arrive individually.

My Role

Usability testing

Research team

Kendra Wong
Yuan Gao




Research - 2 months
Design - 1 month


Amy Bickerton
Aynne Valencia-Brooks

The Challenge

Sometimes, it's hard for families (with kids) who have recently immigrated to the United States to feel confident and comfortable in their communities.

Recently immigrated families (with kids) aren’t aware of what they don’t know until it’s too late.

These families can easily feel stressed because they are overwhelmed by the new and unfamiliar systems such as education, taxes or healthcare.

How might we help families who have recently immigrated with kids to the U.S. find ways to feel more confident and comfortable in their communities?

The Solution

Arrive provides personalized information recommendations, articles, and local services to guide recently immigrated families (with kids) to adapt to their new home and connect with the local community.

1. Arrive provides meaningful information and guidance based on their goals before they move.
2. Arrive connects them with similar families who have similar backgrounds.

Key Features

Take a quick questionnaire

By letting the user take a quick questionnaire about personal background, family information, and interested topics, the system generates a checklist. All information is collected on the user’s profile page, and the user can update his/her information at any time.

Translate languages

The language barrier is one of the reasons that immigrants are lacking access to the information they need. Arrive will allows users to switch different languages by clicking the top right “language bubble” button, and this helps immigrants search more efficiently and accurately.

Browse customized information based on needs

Users can search for any information by putting keywords in the search bar. We provide customized information that caters to their needs based on the topics they are interested in and people they are following.

In the “my neighborhood“ section, we provide related insights for the area the user lives in. This makes it’s easier for people to get a sense of their community before they move in.

Ask experts!

Providing popular services on the top allows users to understand what we can do for them quickly. Users can click on any service to get a better understanding of the service, or they can try to send a direct request with the concern they have to our experts.
Key Features


The system generates a checklist based on the user’s profile automatically. By clicking the “edit” button below, the user can edit the checklist.

Your neighborhood

Neighborhood Insights help people get more familiar with the area they live in.


Arrive communities help people connect with each other and build their social circle in the U. S.


Searching information takes forever. Instead of spending hours on google resources and information. It’s just easier if they can ask someone directly by sending direct requests.


Research Process

We sent 13 surveys and interviewed 8 families in the Potrero Hill area. We then realized that community engagement is a big problem for them. Without enough support, a lot of immigrants might not know how to create bank accounts, how to make a doctor’s appointment, immigrated families with kids can feel easily stressed out and overwhelmed by the new and unfamiliar systems.

Secondary research
Primary research
Empathy map
Semantic profiles
Mental model

Research Findings

After we finished the research, each individual in our class made a presentation poster to summarize our research findings including insights, semantic profiles and persona.

We found three reasons caused this problem for immigrated families with kids:
- Limited access to the information.
- Unfamiliar System.
- Language Barrier.

View research poster

How might we help families who have recently immigrated to the United States find ways to feel more confident and comfortable in their community?


Design 1.0

My first idea was a website that notifies families about events every month so that people can meet local families or families from the same country. The follow-up app allows people to find others who have similar backgrounds in their community.

But interestingly, people complained that they might not have enough time to participate since they are always busy with their life and work. On the app, there is one part that people can post questions and invite other people in the community to answer. I have heard that people love this part and think it would be beneficial.

Design 2.0 (pivot)

For design 2.0, I decided to pivot. I looked at a lot of online forums and designed to Arrive. I designed too fast here, and the usability test results helped me calm down and rethink about the design:
- 4/4 people mentioned that they need a questionnaire beforehand, including choosing languages, city, and home country.
- 4/4 people mentioned they don't like Arrive's look and feel.
- 4/4 people mentioned they need more specific scenarios to test the prototype, such as getting driver licenses or finding a lawyer.
- 2/4 people want consultation services instead of talking to a chatbot.
- 2/4 people want clearer information on the homepage landing page.

Design 2.1

Based on the feedback,  there were 5 main focuses for this iteration -- questionnaire, style guide, user stories, consulting services, and a landing page. I finalized flow charts and landing page.

Final Design


There is much more to come!

There are still many things that need to be validated. Some concerns were brought up when I presented my work in class. For example, how can people trust the content on this website, how can we provide information that can be translated into different languages? But I have received a lot of feedback about the concept itself.

Besides the feedback, I still need to figure out some other designs. The first one is connecting different dots of the overall experience. So the mobile app and landing page are necessary for this project. The second is improving the functionality. When I reviewed this project with my friends, they were saying it would be better if the prototype can explain how to use the checklist and the expert service would be helpful.

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