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Design for a Difference is a national interior design initiative where floor covering showrooms partner with interior designers to make a difference to charitable causes. This year, Design for a Difference has evolved from a contest into a community movement, where a number of socially-conscious International Design Guild (IDG) showrooms around the country will be working with the local designer community on a makeover of a space for a non-profit or charity location in their area – expanding the footprint of the program and making a difference to more local causes.

CHAC LogoThis year, Interiors & Textiles in Palo Alto is partnering with the local business community and design colleges to deliver a communal space makeover for a very deserving non-profit charity organization: The Community Services Agency (CSA).

CSA provides access and information to emergency services, primarily food & shelter to help elderly and lower-income families and individuals in the Mountain View, Los Altos and Los Altos Hills areas. In the prosperous Silicon Valley, where typical housing costs are often exceed $4,000 – $5,000 per month, the effects of income disparity are particularly severe for low-income families. CSA’s mission is to be “the community’s safety net, providing critical support services that preserve and promote stability, self-reliance and dignity.“ They provide emergency financial assistance, a food & nutrition center that directly distributes food to those in need, and social services for the elderly and homeless.

The Design For A Difference Mountain View program will deliver a makeover for the communal lobby space at CSA, including the information area, waiting area, internet access points, and helpdesk. The overarching design principle is Dignity and Self Respect, providing an environment that is functional in its approach to helping its constituents, creating an open and welcoming experience, while still providing areas for private discussion and counsel. The transformation is to create a space that is a “Welcome Center” for those in need of CSA’s services for the community.

The design project will start with space planning, as well as fundraising during the summer months, culminating in an intensive remodeling over a long weekend in thefall. Be sure to check back on the page often to keep up-to-date with progress.