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About Us

Positive experiences can ease toxic stress and help children and youth grow into more resilient, healthier adults. HOPE identifies ways that our communities and systems of care can better ensure that all children have more positive experiences and that all families have support to nurture and celebrate their strengths.

The Four Building Blocks of HOPE are composed of key positive childhood experiences (PCEs). The sources of those experiences and opportunities are the foundation for healthy childhood development.

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History

HOPE combines a public health approach to preventing child abuse with a broader understanding of how children grow to become strong, healthy, and resilient adults.
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Team

The HOPE National Resource Center, led by Dr. Robert Sege, is based out of Tufts Medical Center in Boston with staff all over the country!
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Networks

The HOPE Innovation Network (HIN) consists of organizations across sectors who are implementing the HOPE framework.

Our Mission

HOPE, grounded in science that demonstrates the formative role of positive experiences in human development, seeks to inspire a HOPE-informed movement that fundamentally transforms how we advance health and well-being for our children, families, and communities.

Our Vision

We see a world that honors and fosters positive experiences as being fundamental to everyone’s health and well-being.

Our Theory of Change

AS HOPE IMPLEMENTS our strategic actions, we build a collective understanding of the importance of positive experiences. All of our work is done in collaboration with partners who seek to develop HOPE-informed approaches to supporting children and families. We’re creating a paradigm shift in systems of care, communities, and policies to value and actively bolster positive experiences. This shift builds on our understanding of the power of relationships within families and communities and between those who provide and receive supportive services. Our goal is to improve empathy, drive respect for human dignity, and foster trust among families.

Our Guiding Principles

  • WE HONOR the hope, goodness, and strength that exists inside every single one of us.
  • WE BELIEVE in the goodness embodied by the deep loving relationships between parents and their children.
  • WE SEEK TO CREATE equitable conditions for health and well-being so that all families and children have the opportunity to thrive.
  • WE CELEBRATE our differences as our collective strength and speak out against racism and stereotypes for the harm they inflict.
  • WE JOIN with others to advance the evidence of positive experiences to support health and well-being for all children and families.
  • WE ACT with humility, respect, and gratitude for others in everything we say and do.

Anti-Racism Statement

HOPE sees each person as an individual with essential human dignity. The HOPE Framework recognizes that positive childhood experiences (PCEs) help children grow into healthier adults. Research data have shown that adults who remember PCEs have better lifelong mental health. PCEs protect children who have had adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). This means that ACEs do not need to define a child’s life or determine their fate.

We also know that our society still struggles with the lasting effects of hundreds of years of racism. Race is a social construct, and racism distributes power and privilege to certain groups based on their race. Racism can lead to barriers that make it challenging for children and families to have these PCEs.

Unconscious biases can make it harder for providers to identify and understand how families provide the love and support that their children need despite these barriers. HOPE-informed care seeks to help service providers show empathy by identifying, honoring, and promoting these family strengths.

The four building blocks of HOPE describe broad types of experiences that children need and leaves it to families and communities to decide on specific PCEs for themselves. Focus on HOPE and Positive Childhood Experiences brings to light the love, family, and community support that allow many to thrive even in the face of racism. At the same time, the HOPE framework supports advocacy to ensure that every child has equitable access to the Four Building Blocks, regardless of their race.

Maintaining an attitude of cultural humility allows the HOPE Framework to continue to improve and build on our evolving understanding of racism and its impacts.

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