NEW WEBINAR! Save your seat for A New Vision for Housing Justice: Housing, Wellbeing & Racial Equity on October 11.


We are all deeply driven to meet our needs for wellbeing. We need to cultivate environments that help us align with, tap into, and build on this human drive. Formal institutions or systems aren’t the only environments for change. We can make change in our own lives, in our families, neighborhoods, and communities.

Think about your spheres of influence

All of us are connected to people, groups, and communities where we have influence to help change thinking and actions that can lead to equitable access to wellbeing. Who are the people and entities you are connected to that would benefit from using a wellbeing orientation?

Shift the stories we tell ourselves

Narratives impact our perspectives, our actions, and the initiatives we support. Many of the prevailing narratives in this country reinforce inequitable access to wellbeing. Be aware of the story you and your communities are telling yourselves when explaining someone’s actions or why something is happening. Consider, what are alternative explanations? What are the elements that are easy to overlook because they don’t fit neatly into the narrative?

Here are some questions to consider to get started:

What are the policies and structures in my family, neighborhood or community that limits people’s access to wellbeing?

What spaces and places am I in where my race, gender, sexual orientation or other parts of my identity don’t make me feel “othered”? Where is that not the case and how can I shift the structures to be more inclusive?

How do I hold the complexity and contradictions of the people in my life?

When someone is “not willing to give something up” or “resistant to change,” do I see this as “not caring” or “being unmotivated” or “not ready”?

When I feel myself getting frustrated with someone, do I get genuinely curious about the reasons for their actions or decisions instead?

Do I assume that my understanding is the right understanding of a situation, or do I use tools to make sure I’m not taking mental shortcuts? Do I pay attention to how one experience may mean different things to different people?

Do I learn from what’s going well, or just stop to learn when something goes wrong? When I think about strengths, who decides what to consider a strength?

How do I pay attention to people’s drive to feel belonging? To feel needed?

What are my prevailing assumptions and narratives about people, particularly people in poverty? How does this show up in my actions and the processes that I’m involved with?

Things I can do:

Explore FFI resources  to find tools, guides, and other content that will help you dig deeper, build knowledge, and apply wellbeing concepts to the issues that matter most in your life, neighborhood, or community.

Join an FFI event to gain perspectives and insights from and with other community changemakers.

Contact us about potential partnership and ways we can work together to address a pressing community challenge or issue through a wellbeing lens.

Sign on to the Wellbeing Blueprint and join other community change agents to take action and drive structural and systemic change.


The system is rigged, and the solution isn’t just to create more programs for people harmed by these unfair systems. The solution is to reimagine these systems to make our country fairer and more equitable for everyone — which means ensuring that the places where we work, live, play and pray tap into people’s drive for wellbeing, instead of undermining wellbeing for some and enabling it for others.

That’s what we do.