Roots of Empathy featured in new books
Nov. 1, 2006: In a number of recent book releases, The Roots of Empathy program is recognized and lauded as an exemplary model for changing the landscape of our global society.
Getting to Maybe: How the World is Changed
Frances Westley, Brenda Zimmerman and Michael Quinn Patton
Getting to Maybe "harvests the experience of a wide range of people and organizations…to lay out a brand new way of thinking about making change in communities, in business, and in the world." (Source: Getting to Maybe, 2006)
Mary Gordon is introduced in the chapter "The Powerful Strangers." Here we learn that her childhood was the breeding ground for her commitment to citizen engagement and social justice. The philosophical and historical context of her idea of empathy is explored. Her direct approach to the problem of bullying–bringing the weak and the powerful together in the classroom–is likened to such global initiatives as the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa whose mandate was to bear witness to, record and in some cases grant amnesty to the perpetrators of crimes relating to human rights violations, reparation and rehabilitation.
Child Honoring: How to Turn this World Around
Editors Raffi Cavoukian and Sharna Olfman
Child Honoring is an original philosophy of Raffi Cavoukian, best known as Raffi, award-winning songwriter, recording artist, ecology advocate and author. It is "a compassionate revolution in values, a children-first approach to global restoration." The contributors to the book "include leading thinkers in the field of psychology, education, economics, business, governance and religion. Together, they show how the universal human symbol and reality–the child–can inspire a peacemaking culture for our world." (Source: Child Honoring, 2006)
Mary Gordon contributes to the book in the chapter entitled "The Power of Empathy." She shares success stories of the children in the Roots of Empathy program, provides an overview of the program, and expounds on empathy as an essential human trait.
Celebrating Mary Gordon's investiture to the Order of Canada
Oct. 20, 2006: On October 19th, friends, supporters and family assembled at the Roots of Empathy office for a heartwarming celebration to recognize Mary Gordon's investiture of October 6th to the Order of Canada. During the event, John Ralston Saul, C.C., author, essayist and philosopher (and husband to former Governor General Adrienne Clarkson), spoke eloquently of the significance of the Order of Canada. His remarks helped to deepen everyone's appreciation of the significance of this honour, particularly in a global context. Ms. Gordon was appointed to the Order when Madame Clarkson was in office. The official citation reads:
Mary Gordon, C.M.
Children, parents and educators across Canada and beyond our borders have benefited from the vision, wisdom and commitment of Mary Gordon. A teacher by training, she has pioneered innovative educational programs that promote early childhood development, such as the Parenting and Family Literacy Centres for the Toronto District School Board. As founder and president of Roots of Empathy, she created a program that fosters emotional intelligence and empathy in children, with the goal of reducing aggression and bullying in our schools. She is sought after by organizations throughout the world for her leadership and experience in shaping youth into caring citizens.
Mary Gordon presents at WAVE Conference in London, England
Sep. 20, 2006: On September 18 and 19, Mary Gordon presented at an international meeting held in London, England to address the issues of societal violence. The conference was presented by WAVE Trust who, in The Wave Report 2005: Violence and What to do about it, had this to say about Roots of Empathy:
"The programme may appear to lie outside the age range WAVE has indicated as an intervention priority (i.e. before the third birthday); but the most powerful reason for including ROE is that it actually prepares schoolchildren for parenthood. It emphasizes models and provides literal hands-on experience of how to handle and interact with a real-life baby. Given the number of children who now become parents by ages 12-15, this can be seen as a pre-pregnancy programme."
Further, the report highlights Roots of Empathy as a program with universal application in preventing violence in children. WAVE Trust (Worldwide Alternatives to ViolencE) is an international charity dedicated to advancing public awareness of the root causes of violence and the means to prevent and reduce violence in our society.
Vancouver Dialogues 2006 with His Holiness the Dalai Lama
Sep. 11, 2006: Webcasts of the Vancouver Dialogues 2006 can now be viewed at the Dalai Lama Website
"Educating the Heart", which took place September 8, at 1:30 p.m. PST, features Mary Gordon, Dr. Mark Greenberg, Dr. Martin Brokenleg, Dr. Tim Shriver, Dr. Kim Schonert-Reichl and Dr. Clyde Hertzman in dialogue with the Dalai Lama on the themes of cultivating compassion and educating the heart.
The Vancouver Dialogues 2006 (September 8-10, 2006) were a series of public and private events designed to inaugurate The Dalai Lama Center for Peace and Education in Vancouver, British Columbia.
On September 9 and 10, Mary participated in Connecting for Change, a series of small group conversations among corporate and social thought leaders. On September 10, the Dalai Lama joined a select group of the leaders, of which Mary Gordon was one. She engaged the Dalai Lama in dialogue on her concept of "empathic ethics." During this dialogue, the Dalai Lama had a wonderful, hearty laugh.
The Dalai Lama Center is a non-political, non-religious cultural institution that is aligned with the Dalai Lama's belief that each person should "Develop the heart and work for peace within yourself and the world." It is scheduled for completion in 2009.
To learn more about the Vancouver Dialogues 2006 and The Dalai Lama Center for Peace and Education, please visit the Dalai Lama Center website.
Mary Gordon meets with New Zealand Prime Minister
August 23, 2006: On August 23rd, New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark met with Roots of Empathy Founder and President Mary Gordon when Ms. Gordon was in the country presenting to government ministers on Roots of Empathy. The Prime Minister is an enthusiastic supporter of Roots of Empathy and is looking forward to its implementation in Auckland in the new school year, February 2007. Prime Minister Clark is also anticipating visiting a Roots of Empathy classroom with Mary Gordon on her next visit.
Roots of Empathy Top 10 Peace book
December 22, 2005: NOW magazine, Toronto 's weekly news and entertainment publication, has named Mary Gordon's Roots of Empathy: Changing the World Child by Child, as a consciousness-raising, must-have book for peace lovers. "This book, rapidly moving up Canada's bestseller lists, outlines a strategy to end bullying by bringing violent kids in contact with babies."
Roots of Empathy book release
September 24, 2005: Roots of Empathy Founder/President Mary Gordon chronicles the creation of her award-winning classroom program in Roots of Empathy: Changing the World Child by Child. Mary shares her vision of a society of compassionate and caring children who will pass on their legacy of empathy to their own children. To learn more about the book and Mary's cross-Canada tour click here.
Founder/President named to Order of Canada
August 30, 2005: We are delighted to announce that ROE Founder/President Mary Gordon has been named to the Order of Canada. The Order of Canada is the centrepiece of Canada's Honours System and recognizes a lifetime of outstanding achievement, dedication to the community and service to the nation. The Order recognizes people in all sectors of Canadian society. Their contributions are varied, yet they have all enriched the lives of others and made a difference to this country. The Order of Canada's motto is DESIDERANTES MELIOREM PATRIAM (They desire a better country). It is wonderful to have all of Mary's efforts, which we celebrate regularly, acknowledged in this special Canadian way. One more triumph for our Founder/President!
Roots of Empathy is Front Page News!!
June 9, 2005: Roots of Empathy was featured on the front page of the Toronto Star on Thursday, June 2nd and on the Vancouver Courier Sunday, June 5, 2005.
Visit from Netherlands Education Delegation
May 12, 2005: The Ontario Ministry of Education and the Toronto District School Board have organized a Roots of Empathy classroom visit for members of the Education Committee of the Parliament of The Netherlands and the Consul General of The Netherlands in Toronto. The delegates visited a Roots of Empathy program in a Junior/Senior Kindergarten classroom at Winchester Public School in Toronto on Thursday, May 12, 2005.
Governor General Visits Roots of Empathy
April 21, 2005
Roots of Empathy was honoured to welcome Her Excellency the Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson, Governor General of Canada and His Excellency John Ralston Saul to a classroom visit on April 21, 2005. Roots of Empathy Founder/President Mary Gordon and Board Chair Joan Green along with school Principal Annie Lee welcomed the Governor General to Winchester Public School in Toronto. Her Excellency was highly complimentary of the program and of the children's insights and questions about the baby's development. She spoke to the children about the importance of good citizenship, and making room for everyone in an inclusive society. The Governor General's visit was an extraordinary milestone for Roots of Empathy and we share this honour with our 1,141 programs across Canada.
Roots of Empathy wins Leonardo da Vinci Award
April 15, 2005: Roots of Empathy was awarded the Leonardo da Vinci Award today for innovation in education at a gala celebration held at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. The Leonardo da Vinci Awards were presented during Toronto 's fifth annual Creativity and Innovation Day celebration, recognizing creativity in art, business, entrepreneurship, and education. Roots of Empathy was honoured to be nominated among an impressive group of creative education programs. Creativity and Innovation Day began in Toronto in 2001 and has since mobilized a worldwide celebration of creativity and innovation in 106 communities across 43 countries. For more information visit: www.creativityday.ca.
Mary Gordon, Massive Thinker
April 15, 2005
Roots of Empathy Founder/President, Mary Gordon was one of three Ashoka Fellows to participate in the Massive Thinkers Forum Social Entrepreneurs Making Global Change, part of the Massive Change exhibition at the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto on April 15th. The exhibition examines extraordinary breakthroughs that have changed our world and Ashoka Canada is presenting this panel discussion as an example of social entrepreneurs making global change. The discussion is followed by a Q & A with the participants.