“If we cannot see ourselves in others, whomever they may be, then their suffering becomes easily dismissed. If their suffering is dismissed, so is their human potential.”
Dominique Sinagra, Founder & CEO
When I was 19 I set out on a journey. Having dropped out of high school and not sure what I was going to do with my life, I decided to travel. I found myself in Lesotho, Southern Africa, where I lived and volunteered at an orphanage for a year.
One evening, the children and I gathered in a circle and shared our stories. When the children spoke they did not speak about illness, poverty, violence or other scenarios commonly associated with their lives by the outside world. Instead, they spoke about the fear of being alone, the love for a sibling, the heartbreak of losing a parent and dreams for the future. Universal themes that could be found in any story the world over.
I travelled for four years gathering people’s stories. I spoke with mothers in England, veterans in Oklahoma, ‘untouchables’ in India, shepherds in the remote mountains of Lesotho, men and women who’d been abducted and released by the Lord’s Resistance Army in Uganda, refugees in Palestine and along the Syrian border in Jordan.
The stories I heard were vastly unique, but all consisted of similar themes of love, loss, happiness, sadness, fear and hope which bridge the gap between culture, location and circumstance. These observations may sound obvious, yet at the crux of our suffering and challenges - from war, poverty and the destruction of the Earth - is an inability to see ourselves in others. This has left us, despite remarkable connectivity of social media, all lonelier and more isolated than ever, craving a global Village.
- Dominique Sinagra, Founder
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