The Unfolding Story of Home for Humanity
A SIMPLE HOME: Home for Humanity’s philosophy and mission have emerged from the experience of the last 12 years at a simple family home immersed in the pristine nature of the Valromey valley in the ancient Jurassic mountains in the department of AIN in rural France, near Geneva (Switzerland), the humanitarian and human rights capital of the United Nations.
THE CO-HOSTS' VISION: The co-hosts of this home, Alexander Schieffer from Germany & Rama Mani from India, met in 2007, united by their equal passion for humanity, nature, culture, art, education, wisdom traditions and spirituality. Their joint motivation was to catalyse the highest creative potential for integral transformation inherent in every individual, every culture and every society. Their shared vision was to create an inclusive, enabling stage where individuals and organisations from diverse cultures could be supported to innovate and enact their distinct and invaluable contributions to co-create a life-affirming future for all life on Earth.
EARTH - OUR SHARED HOME: This convergent vision drew Alexander and Rama, with their son Arjuna, to Hotonnes en Haut Valromey. Their first encounter was in the shade of the old ash tree in the garden of what grew to become the integral home campus of Home for Humanity. In this valley, they felt embraced by a sense of belonging to this ancient Earth, relic of the Jurassic age, traversed by ancient Celtic, Gallic and Roman civilizations. From here their transformative work with the organisations they had each co-founded (TRANS4M, Theatre of Transformation Academy and Oxford Enacting Global Transformation Initiative) required them to continue to travel intensively to all continents, especially to countries emerging from crisis and engaged in societal transition. However, they felt a growing call to marry their vision for human and societal transformation with the genius loci – the mission of this landscape – to energize planetary and human emergence.
TRANSFORMATION BEGINS AT HOME: Starting in 2008, Alexander and Rama opened the doors of their home to convene a series of transformative and creative participatory events, including undergraduate and doctoral courses, integral dialogues, cultural, artistic and nature-based festivals. Home for Humanity became the global home campus of the TRANS4M movement that Alexander co-founded together with his friend and colleague Ronnie "Samanyanga" Lessem from Zimbabwe, based in the UK. Diverse people of all ages, backgrounds and sectors, united by a shared desire to contribute to positive transformation, participated in the kaleidoscope of transformative processes offered. They experienced the stimulating combination of the welcoming and stimulating multi-cultural atmosphere indoors and the healing and vivifying beauty of nature outdoors.
COMING HOME TO OUR TRUE HUMAN POTENTIAL AND SOCIAL ARTISTRY: In bringing home their global transformation work, the founders were inspired by their own close collaborators, partners and friends on different continents who had pioneered transformative national and global movements, starting from or centred around their own homes. Some of the many great sparks of inspiration who had done so were Swami Agnivesh, founder of the Liberation of Bonded Labour Movement in India, Zahira Kamal, founder of the Women’s NGO Coalition in Jerusalem, Palestine, and Dr. Ariyaratne, leader of the Sarvodaya movement in Sri Lanka.
A particular source of inspiration was Professor Jean Houston, founder of Social Artistry in USA, who became a close friend, soul guide and co-creator, starting in 2012. This globally revered co-founder of the Human Potential movement, sharpened their skills in unleashing the full creative capacity and unique genius of each individual. Their visits to Jean Houston’s home in Oregon, where she hosted salons and academies for small groups, between her global tours to lecture large crowds, revealed the power of anchoring one’s global transformational work in the sanctuary of one’s own home. While innumerable remarkable individuals have contributed to shaping Home for Humanity over the years, there is no doubt that Jean Houston’s incomparably transformative teaching and mentoring style, her uniquely creative, authentic and joyful way of being, and above all her deep care for and generosity towards everyone she encounters inspired Home for Humanity’s philosophy.
A WORLDWIDE FAMILY OF AGENTS OF TRANSFORMATION: Between 2008 and 2020, over 1000 agents of transformation from more than 50 countries on all continents – from Aotearoa/New Zealand to Zimbabwe, from Syria to Sri Lanka, from Brazil to India – as well as from the Valromey valley and neighbouring regions in France, Switzerland, Italy and Germany – felt at home here, as they reimagined and reshaped the world and their own lives. Many left feeling equipped to contribute in a new way to personal and societal transformation. Many left inspired to create similar welcoming spaces of transformation to shape our collective future in their own family homes, student rooms, refugee houses, communities or organisations – and did so in their own way. Each visitor was not only profoundly impacted by their visit/s to this home, but also left their indelible mark on the evolving ethos and practice of Home for Humanity.
A COLLECTIVE CO-CREATION FOR OUR SHARED FUTURE: It is the collective experiences, insights and inputs of this extended family of co-creators from all continents, from diverse cultures and backgrounds that inspired both the establishment of Home for Humanity as a non-profit association for integral transformation rooted in each of our own homes, as well as the articulation of the Humanity Charter as a living aspirational document to support humanity’s quest for unity and for the co-creation of a just and regenerative future for all life, and ground all the activities of the association. Home for Humanity, enriched by its 12 year history and its local-global family, is today a global home campus for integral transformation, a trans-continental alliance of transformation agents of all ages dedicated to creating a regenerative future for the Earth family, and a shared vision of humanity in unity with all life.
INAUGURATION: Home for Humanity was formally founded on International Peace Day, 21 September 2019, when the Humanity Charter was adopted by a diverse group representing all continents.
THE ESTABLISHMENT AND FOUNDING FAMILY OF THE HOME FOR HUMANITY - L'HOMME POUR L'HUMANITE ASSOCIATION: Following its first AGM on 20 September, 2019, Home for Humanity-L’Homme pour l’humAINité was officially registered on 15 January 2020 as a non-profit association under the French Association Law of 1901, by the Prefecture of the department of AIN. In keeping with the spirit of a home and a family, the French Association was established by six Co-Founders from diverse cultural, disciplinary and age backgrounds. Ranging from the 70th to the mid-20s in age, the co-founders have each served as caring custodians and ‘family members’ of Home for Humanity by helping to develop its vision and practice over the past years, while being pioneering changemakers in their respective fields and countries.
HOME FOR HUMANITY TODAY: Home for Humanity has become the collective aegis that combines, builds on and evolves further the combined work of TRANS4M Centre for Integral Development, Theatre of Transformation Academy, and the Enacting Global Transformation Initiative at the University of Oxford through the Art and Science of Integral Transformation. The Earth Home Alliance grows out of longstanding relationships with remarkable pioneers and partner organisations in both organisations’ local-global community of practice, built up over the past decades of transformative co-creation in sustainable development, peace and justice, global governance, culture and the arts.
STEPPING UP - TOWARDS A GLOBAL FOUNDATION: The next step envisaged by the Co-Founders is the establishment of a foundation, registered in Switzerland, and championed by young agents of transformation. The Foundation would provide Home for Humanity with a consolidated basis to receive funds to support the transformative initiatives of an expanding community of pioneering changemakers, and the spread of homes for humanity around the world, through these times of turbulent transition, and to accelerate the co-creation of a Home on Earth.
... with all our hearts, from our homes, from our diverse societies, for our world.