Compassion Games make our communities safer, kinder, more just and better places to live.
Compassion Games International (CGI) is a year-round non-profit initiative with the fiscal sponsorship of the Compassionate Action Network (CAN). Our mission is to inspire, activate, celebrate, and share compassionate action.
The primary way we do this is through three affiliated and complementary programs: (1) the Global Compassion Games, staged from Sept. 11-Sept. 21 annually; and (2) the Compassion Relays, which are open year-round; and (3) Compassion Games league specific “coopetitions” that happen throughout the year.
The Compassion Games came into being in response to a community challenge issued in 2012 from Mayor Greg Fischer of Louisville, Ky., to Seattle, Wash. In response to the challenge, the “Compassion Games” and a new possibility of “coopetition” (cooperative competition) was born. In a few short years, the Games have engaged cities, community groups, families and individuals in several countries.
Our objectives are to:
- Empower communities to build the capacity to learn new skills that enable more compassionate behaviors towards each other, the earth, and ourselves.
- Activate acts of compassion and provide a forum for participants to reflect on the meaning of their actions.
- Provide an organizing structure that motivates participants and allows them to be creative and self-organizing in how they express their acts of compassion.
- Provide tools for participants to report their acts of compassion so that others can gain inspiration and ideas for their own actions.
- Develop and showcase leadership related to compassionate action.
- Create a fun and engaging experience for participants, reigniting the human need for playfulness to sustain compassionate action and to more deeply and authentically connect with one another.
- Spread the concept of compassion and its profound benefits throughout local communities around the world.
- Measure and report on these outcomes.
Anyone can play the Compassion Games or carry the compassion torch in the Relays as an individual, as a team, or challenge other groups or communities to play together in a “coopetition,” in which we compete and strive with each other, not against each other, to elevate ourselves and the world to make it the kindest, safest, and most just place it can be.
Who We Are
Jon Ramer: Founder and “First First Follower” of Compassion Games International, Ramer was moved by the events of Sept. 11, 2001 to focus his entrepreneurial energies on non-profit community organizing. In 2008, Ramer was an organizational participant in The Seeds of Compassion, an event aligned with a visit to Seattle by H.H. Dalai Lama. As Executive Director of the Compassionate Action Network, Ramer conceived and implemented the Compassionate Cities Campaign. He is the co-author, with Phil Lane, Jr., of “Deep Social Networks and the Digital Fourth Way.”
Chief Phil Lane, Jr.: Chairman of Compassion Games International, Lane is an internationally recognized Indigenous leader and a traditionally recognized Hereditary Chief and Elder. He is the founder and chairman of the Four World’s International Institute (FWII), which works to build partnerships with all nations and peoples. He is an enrolled member of the Ihanktonwan Dakota and Chickasaw Nations, and is a citizen of both Canada and the United States.
Sande Hart: Head Coach of Compassion Games International, Hart also serves as Chair for the United Religions Initiative (URI) North America region and is president of the Spiritual and Religious Alliance for Hope (S.A.R.A.H.), a women’s interfaith community building organization with the goal of empower women and community, end religiously motivated violence, and to promote a culture of peace.
Dr. Leslie Meehan: Dr. Leslie Meehan, MSEE PhD, is a leadership consultant and co-creator of collaborative networks committed to community healing and transformation. She has over 25 years experience in strategic planning, intuitive process, systems architecture, management, and peer facilitation in business and non-profits. Leslie co-founded the Gaiafield Project, a metanetwork hosting global peace practices for social change and transformation. She founded the Thriving Resilient Communities Funding Circle (TRCF) and Collaboratory(TRCC) whose network leaders fund and build sustainable local community systems in hundreds of North American communities. Leslie is grateful to be working with these wonderful people and other leading social changemakers like the Compassion Games.
Andy Smallman: Andy Smallman is the founding director of Puget Sound Community School, an independent school in Seattle for students in grades 6-12. With his wife, Melinda Shaw, and a dedicated group of parents, he started the school in 1994 to create a model for a style of education that helps students build on their strengths and nurtures their intrinsic motivation. Since the founding of PSCS, Andy has facilitated classes on the subject of kindness, the purpose of which is to help people connect to their true nature and increase peace in the world.
Rahbin Shyne: Compassion Games International Education Coach- Author of the Adventure in Compassion titles, Shyne is an active proponent of transforming the educational setting through compassion. As Compassion Games International’s Education Coach, Shyne is active in recruiting and supporting the Schools and Colleges playing in the School League. In addition to bringing compassion to the education setting, she is Executive Director of Earth Mothers, a nonprofit organization which promotes compassion for others through charitable giving and compassion for the planet through sustainable living.
Lia Mandelbaum: As Culture of Compassion Coach, Lia is a journalist who, after first writing about the Games, brought them to the High School in downtown Los Angeles where served as an intern social worker. It was her great success on her campus that got the attention of the LA Department of Mental Health who have since introduced the Games to all of their area school representatives. Lia has also provided great examples and opportunities for other teachers around the world to model. Lia is currently completing her Masters thesis on the Compassion Games.
Dr. Lesa Walker: As a physician, for over 30 years I have worked extensively in the field of public health and preventive medicine with a focus on designing public health service systems for children and youth with disabilities at the state and national levels. For 24+ years I was the Medical Director of the Children with Special Health Care Needs (CSHCN) Services Program and served as the Title V CSHCN Director at the Texas Department of State Health Services. Currently, I continue working part-time as a medical consultant, however my energy has shifted to a direct focus on compassion. I serve as an Education Program Associate of the Charter for Compassion International and as a member of the Leadership Team of the Compassion Games International. I made a shift in my work life to allow me to devote more creative energy to engaging people in the practice “3D” Compassion (caring for others, self, and the Earth).
Phyllis Shulman: Phyllis Shulman recently completed sixteen years as Senior Policy Advisor to Seattle City Council Member Richard Conlin. She was responsible for strategic policy recommendations, civic engagement, and development of new initiatives on a myriad of issues effecting Seattle and the region. Her expertise in policy development and facilitation of community interests has been utilized on a number of the more complex issues including strengthening the local and regional food system, the replacement of the Alaskan Way Viaduct, State Route 520 Bridge Replacement, and Neighborhood Planning. She was involved in designing and implementing local food system and food policy initiatives, economic renewal and development strategies, climate change and adaptation policies, Urban Forestry Stewardship Plan, emergency preparedness initiatives, recovery planning and a Resilient City Strategy. Phyllis is a founding member of the Puget Sound Regional Food Policy Council as well as the State Food Policy Roundtable. Phyllis has a broad background having worked in the non-profit, private, government and education sectors. She is currently working as an independent consultant in local and regional food systems, community resilience and compassionate action.
Joey Crotty: The youngest of the Compassion Games team by at least a century, Joey utilizes his talents as a hopeless storyteller and writer, creative strategist, and rogue techy to elevate the evolutionary capacity of consciousness and compassion in the world. Joey is an undergraduate researcher and co-founder of the Consciousness Club at the University of Washington – Bothell. He is a major organizer toward the creation of the Center for Education and Research in Consciousness (CERC), the first center of its kind at a public university. Joey enjoys spontaneous song-making, belly laughter, all of nature, and learning from the wisdom of little ones to get out there and play like his life depended on it.
Biographies to come:
Sundance Chief Rueben George
Sherry is Dancing