British Columbia Assembly of First Nations

Website redesign for progressive organization

The British Columbia Assembly of First Nations (BCAFN) is an innovative organization that represents the 203 First Nations across the province. They advocate for rights and interests, like education, health, culture, and language, and work towards the respect and recognition of First Nations' inherent laws, lands, and traditions.

For people across the province, BCAFN is a key source of information. The website provides access to news, event and meeting details, and resources for climate change, economic development, justice, and employment. We worked with BCAFN to launch a new website, designed with user experience (UX) best practices, to communicate the progressive work they do.


Services Provided

  • Custom Solutions
  • UX Research, Testing & Strategy
  • Content Strategy
  • Accessible Design
  • Integrated Online Tools
  • User-friendly CMS

"We've been working with the team at Upanup since 2016 and everything they deliver is impeccable. We always appreciate their work!"

Vanessa West

Chief of Staff, British Columbia Assembly of First Nations


The Challenge

The BCAFN website serves many audiences, with different community priorities, levels of language and digital literacy, and Internet access and speeds. Our focus was creating a dynamic design that best serves these varied needs and preferences. We leveraged insights from website users, along with our team's UX design expertise and experience working with BCAFN, to create a beautiful, effective solution.

First Nations dancer
BCAFN leaders

The Solution

We kicked off this project by gathering insights from BCAFN audiences, including Chiefs of First Nations communities, external agencies, and the media. Survey results actively shaped the new website design. For example, respondents identified upcoming events and community details as the most important information for them, and the design prioritizes this content with a prominent events calendar and interactive map to highlight individual communities.

Our content experts collaborated with BCAFN staff to craft clear, well-organized pages and an easy-to-navigate site map. One-on-one user testing with initial designs confirmed a layout that works well for all literacy levels and browsing styles. The homepage, for instance, is a streamlined showcase of events, news, and priority areas. Banners feature eye-catching visuals and concise messaging that is easy to scan.

View of BCAFN website homepage
View of BCAFN website inside page

The Results

The new BCAFN website reflects First Nations cultures, feels modern, engaging and dynamic, and makes it easy for everyone to access information. The website's Drupal platform provides useful functionality, like automatic event archiving, to keep the website up-to-the-minute and reduce workloads for busy staff. The result is an effective communication tool that reflects real user needs and the proud, progressive, and innovative nature of BCAFN. We're excited that the website just won an Arcturus award in the Vega Awards, an international competition recognizing creative digital communication. Check out the new website here.

View of BCAFN website priority areas
Views of BCAFN website on mobile