2017: Year of Millions Fleeing For Safety; 2018: Corporations Must Step Up
Scrolling through the New York Times “2017 Year in Pictures” you’ll see a common theme across the globe: millions of people across the world were forced to flee. People fled natural disasters like wildfires in California, and flooding from Hurricanes Harvey, Irma or Maria. Then there were horrific scenes of people fleeing man-made atrocities like gun violence, terrorism and ethnic cleansing (genocide). September was a particularly awful month. Rohynga refugees continued to flee their own military in Myanmar, who killed more than 6,700 just because of their religion. According to the United Nations, more than 650,000 escaped and are now stuck in refugee camps in Bangladesh.
The Fuji Declaration Brings More Compassion to the World with The Charter for Compassion International
In May of this year, I had the great fortune of being invited to Japan by the Goi Peace Foundation, the Soul of WoMen, and the Fuji Declaration to participate in the Fuji Declaration Symposium, and the Symphony of Peace Prayers celebration. I was surrounded by extraordinary peace makers in the form of environmentalists, authors, community builders, world renowned thought leaders, and researchers, all deeply spiritual, all deeply grounded in the common vision of a world of balance, peace and harmony. To say the trip was transformational is an understatement.
North Thurston Public Schools Launches Coin Drive to Fund Lacey Food Bank
Lacey City Council, North Thurston Public Schools (NTPS) and the Lacey South Sound Chamber of Commerce have partnered to build a new Lacey Food Bank as their first “Compassionate Community” project. North Thurston Public Schools will be doing their part by launching a “Make a Change” coin drive. The drive will happen in all 22 schools in the district throughout the school year, starting as early as November.
In a Volatile Climate on Campus, Professors Teach on Tenterhooks
"Twelve Steps to a Compassionate Life,” a guide to spreading kindness, is an odd choice for a political science syllabus. But Shannon Mariotti sees the need. Her seminar about race and class alienation invites contention; course readings swing between Tea Party and far-left perspectives.
The 13 students represent the stew of political views at Southwestern University, a liberal arts campus in mostly red Georgetown, Tex. Dr. Mariotti pushes buttons, but prudently. She wants reactions, she said, somewhere “between nice and angry.” She hopes the book — from step one (“Learn about compassion”) to 12 (“Love your enemies”) — will teach students “to develop compassion and empathy” for opposing, even distasteful stances.
The Pirates of Silicon Beach
In his 2002 classic The Rise of the Creative Class, Carnegie Mellon professor Richard Florida argued that “creative class” professionals like tech engineers, held the key to revitalizing America’s cities. He encouraged government planners and citizens to cater to the tastes of these creative professionals by developing walkable urban neighborhoods well-served by transit and with ample amenities. The result came with rents skyrocketing, pricing out many ordinary citizens. Sound familiar? Cities have become more segregated by income and economic class. Mixed-income neighborhoods have been on the decline, replaced by concentrated pockets of wealth and poverty. We are more segregated now than the end of the civil war. Can you hack that?
Read the full article here.
Practising compassion in an uncompassionate health system
“We just don’t have time to care!” is the heartfelt protest of health workers in every country we visit. This is the reality of modern healthcare – always being asked to do more with less, in a frantic and stress-filled workplace. Health professionals going home exhausted, not with the satisfaction of a job well done but fretting about care too hurried, and patients neglected. Yet, amidst the storm, some remarkable health professionals create a circle of calm. They go about their work in an unhurried way, finding time to greet their patients, put them at ease, listening deeply and offering kindness and compassion. They don’t neglect their clinical tasks, indeed they seem to get the work done with quiet efficiency. These inspiring workers go home with satisfaction and joy in their hearts. How is that possible?
Can compassion have economic benefits?
An ice pop factory in Wheeling, West Virginia, called Ziegenfelder Corporation, recently embraced hiring practices that ignore felony status and addiction history. CEO Lisa Allen said about 20 percent of her employees have some sort of legal or drug history — numbers that aren't surprising given the ongoing opioid epidemic. But Allen doesn’t consider that background important hiring information.
Fighting hate with compassionate actions: Mayors reflect on Charlottesville
Across the country, the condemnation to the white supremacist rally and violence in Charlottesville was swift and unequivocal, proof that Americans can come together to uphold national values irrespective of the White House’s confounding statements. Yet this moment demands more than strenuous words and counter protests. We need continued shifts in individual attitudes, collective actions, and public policies to ensure American prosperity is created by and for all people. For that reason, I turned to a few mayors for inspiration on the very real steps that are being taken to create a more inclusive society.
Karen Armstrong Awareded Honorary Doctorate at VU Amsterdam
If there is one concept that defines the work of British author and religious scientist Karen Armstrong, it is compassion. She highlights this common core in a wide variety of religious traditions and has made an important contribution to the ongoing debate about the position different religions hold in society.
Youth Leaders Inspire a Compassionate Healthcare Future at North America’s First Healthcare Leadership School
The 2017 Healthcare Leadership Seminar was hosted by the Healthcare Constellation of Compassionate Louisville with fiscal sponsorship for the seminar coming from the Charter for Compassion International. Eminent teachers gave their time for free. Sponsorship from the University of Louisville School of Medicine, the Kentucky Medical Association, ChooseWell, Passport Healthplan and WellCare helped to offset the expenses of international students with financial need.
Read this article by Dr. Robin Youngson, founder of Hearts in Healthcare.
Muslim Ban 3.0 Is An Alarming Echo Of Xenophobic Policies That Killed Anne Frank and other Jews
Anne Frank could have been a 77-year-old living in the USA today, if the United States didn’t enforce draconian limitations and constantly changing rules on Jewish refugees seeking to flee Nazi Germany. Her father, Otto Frank, struggled to find safety for his two daughters in the United States, but the process was fruitless in the face of a bureaucracy bent on limiting the numbers of Jewish refugees in the United States. She ended up dying in a Nazi concentration camp at the age of 15, along with her mother and sister.
For Brattleboro, a Charter of Compassion
Voter-approved initiative calls for municipal endorsement of 'absolute justice, equity, and respect'
It wasn’t exactly with a stroke of the pen, but on May 2, in a unanimous voice vote, the five members of the Selectboard declared the town “compassionate.” Brattleboro is now a Compassionate City as articulated in the Charter for Compassion. What does this mean? And what are the town’s responsibilities?