Empathy is the feeling that you understand and share another person's experiences and emotions. It is the ability to 'put yourself in someone else's shoes.'
Empathy is understanding that everyone has their own story, listening to those stories, and sharing your story, as way to respect and embrace the power of individuality and diversity.
Empathy is being mindful of our own feelings, and being responsible for how our words and actions affect others. It is the most powerful tool we have to create connections between people and to build community.
Storytelling is the social and cultural activity of sharing narratives, and has existed throughout time and across cultures as a form of documentation, communication, fellowship, education and entertainment. Stories are a powerful tool to better understanding one’s neighbors, community, and society. The sharing of personal stories encourages understanding and connection, a chance to walk in each other’s shoes.
We harness the power of the narrative to promote empathy, sharing stories as a way to break down barriers and shatter stereotypes.
'The story is a machine for empathy. In contrast to logic or reason, a story is about emotion that gets staged over a sequence of dramatic moments, so you empathize with the characters without really thinking about it too much. It is a really powerful tool for imagining yourself in other people's situations.'
empathy programming in schools
Empathy Through Art offers a 10-week program for elementary schools that creates opportunities for young people K-5 to engage in art making, group discussion and classroom collaboration to encourage social-emotional learning. Art-based activities offer a judgement-free space where students are able to:
"Humans aren't as good as we should be in our capacity to empathize with feelings and thoughts of others, be they humans or other animals on Earth. So maybe part of our formal education should be training in empathy. Imagine how different the world would be if, in fact, that were reading, writing, arithmetic, empathy."
Neil deGrasse Tyson
explore feeling identification
learn empathy-related vocabulary
gain tools for talking about and managing emotions
discover creative methods to recall personal experiences that
Empathy is the the building block for creating a community. It's what connects us as neighbors, and encourages us to be mindful of one another, to take care of each other. Empathy is what compels us to take action and create change in the world around us.
We utilize storytelling, art making and creative collaboration to promote dialogue and shared experiences in the community through: