These are some of the fundamental ideas and values that have guided Hopeworks Community over the last years. Most of them have been the subject of multiple posts.
People should be able to make their own choices about their own life.
They should have choices that matter.
They should have access to the knowledge, skills, and support that enable them to make the best choices they can for their own life.
They should have the ability to change those choices as life dictates or circumstances change.
Nothing that anyone is called or limits makes them less of a human being, broken or deficient in some fundamental way.
All of us have limits. There are some things that will not change and some things we will not be, but the capacity for change, for life getting better…..for hope is real and not based on groundless wishing or pollyannish thinking.
People can and do thrive under the most challenging of circumstances. Dont give up on anyone.
People who live difficult lives can be successful in their endeavors…..connected in their relationships…..and live a life of purpose and meaning.
Man is a biological, social, emotional, historical, cognitive, spiritual and relational being. Any system of thought that reduces man to one of this dimensions or that tries to say that one of these dimensions is more fundamental or the cause of others distorts what people are.
A biological, social, emotional, historical, cognitive, spiritual, or relational fact is most important in the way it manifests itself as a human issue and the misunderstanding of this causes great harm.
Life is largely a matter of momentum. Things that are more likely to happen, all other things being equal, tend to happen more often. A major secret to being in control of your life is understanding how to control the momentum of it. Bad things can and will always happen. That is what it means to be alive. But we can affect the difficulty with which they occur.
People learn. Experiences have the opportunity to teach us important things that make the experiences after them better.
Meaning matters. In choosing what we make of things we make likely what they make of us.
Many people are ordinary people dealing with extraordinary circumstances and we so often do not acknowledge their courage or give them the credit due.
In any circumstance some people are doing better and some people are doing worse. The people doing worse can learn from the people doing better. Lived experience matters.
Every person has times where they are doing better and times when they are doing worse. As much as you can do better things on purpose.
Support is essential. People who dont support others normally find it hard to find people who support them.
Taking care of yourself does not mean living like you are the only important thing in the world.
Accepting what you cant control gives you the capacity to control the things you can.
“What happened” is the most important question you can ask anyone. Helping people to cope with injury is more often than not the key to really caring.
Feelings lie. It is often not as bad as it feels. It is often not as good as it feels.
There is no real explanation for tragedy. It just is.