Thursday, July 14, 2016

More International Communities Join Compassionate Communities

Karen Armstrong, founder of the Charter for Compassion explains a compassionate community:

“A compassionate city is an uncomfortable city!  A city that is uncomfortable when anyone is homeless or hungry.  Uncomfortable if every child isn’t loved and given rich opportunities to grow and thrive.  Uncomfortable when as a community we don’t treat our neighbors as we would wish to be treated.”

The Charter for Compassion recently welcomed 4 additional communities to their Compassionate Communities list:

Brisbane, Australia

Colombo, Sri Lanka

Los Angeles, CA, USA

Rotterdam, Netherlands (see their new website)

Joining the Charter for Compassion Partners recently are:

Big Daddy Biscuits (Atlanta, GA, USA)

Camp Horizon (Atlanta, GA, USA)

Joelyn Lutz (Santa Maria, CA, USA)

City for All Women (Ottawa, Canada) Initiative

Metropolitan Community Charities (Los Angeles, CA, USA)

Nonprofit I.Q. (Bothell, WA, USA)

NYCNVC (New York, NY, USA)

Youth Equity Stewardship (Brooklyn, NY, USA)

From the Charter for Compassion:

No single community in the world is a Compassionate Community in any abstract or formal sense, just as no community is devoid of compassion.  Each community will find its own path to establishing compassion as a driving and motivating force, and each will conduct its own evaluation of what is “uncomfortable” in that community’s unique culture—that is, those issues that cause pain and suffering to members of the community.  For one community that discomfort may be youth violence or an epidemic of teen suicide.  Another community may discover that a portion of their community—perhaps immigrants, the homeless, or an LGBTQ group--has been marginalized, harassed, or even physically threatened.  Yet another community, as in Botswana for example, the major discomforts may have to do with the needs of large numbers of street children orphaned by the tragedy of the AIDS epidemic.

The Charter’s Compassionate Communities program is not a certificate program that offers a seal of approval, nor does it subscribe to a single definition of a Compassionate Community.  Instead, the Charter invites communities of all sizes to bring compassion to life in practical, specific ways through compassion-driven actions—in neighborhoods, businesses, schools and colleges, healthcare, the arts, local government, peace groups, environmental advocacy groups, and faith congregations.

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