Elevating the power of human connection
Human connection is foundational to our individual and collective thriving. When we bring empathy, mutuality, vulnerability, and curiosity to our interactions, we feel seen, heard, and valued. We’re able to appreciate what makes us distinctive and what we have in common. Relationships become a source of strength and sustenance, and we can bridge our differences to address our most complex and urgent challenges, together.
Developing our capacity to form and maintain healthy relationships
All of us are born with a need and capacity for human connection.
Our earliest relationships and the emotional connections we experience as babies with parents and caregivers are integral to developing our sense of self — and our ability to trust, empathize, and build mutually supportive, nurturing relationships throughout life.
During these early years, we also experience separation and learn the skills of repairing trust and connection that lasting, healthy relationships depend on.
That's why we support programs designed to establish positive, resilient bonds and healthy relationships between babies and parents from birth.
Reinforcing our ability to understand ourselves and each other, and positively relate across difference
Having positive encounters with people who have a different background and worldview than our own — and taking time to reflect on what we hear and learn — reinforces our ability to better understand who we are, empathize with others, and build lifelong skills of perspective-taking and bridge-building.
Adolescence is the time in our lives when our sense of identity and values are being formed, and we are most open to new people and new ideas.
That's why we support efforts that provide adolescents with experiences where they can forge positive relationships across difference and proactively contribute to their communities. These experiences help young people develop a profound understanding of their personal civic responsibility and forge a commitment to the common good, now and well into the future.
Photo Credit: Lily-Anne Trainor
Building a more relational and pluralist culture in America to help people prioritize human connection, see our shared humanity, and embrace our differences
If given the opportunity and support, a growing number of Americans would contribute to repairing and strengthening the social fabric of our communities and our country.
It starts by countering the narratives of fear, division, and dehumanization and making the case that this work is not only possible, but widely sought after—and already underway all around us.
When more of us learn about the power of human connection—and actually see it in our own backyards—the better motivated and equipped we become to contribute.
That's why we support, connect, and amplify the science, stories, experiences, and tools that help people forge strong relationships, create communities of belonging, and bridge divides.