First 2021 International Family Dialogue Focuses on Global Family Trends

On Sunday, June 27, more than fifty people from countries around the world participated in Learning Life’s first live live international family dialogue of 2021. The dialogue was the first of six free online interchanges to be held from June to November (one per month) focused on the overarching question “what do families worldwide need to be safe and healthy?” in light of the coronavirus pandemic, climate change, and other current international threats to family safety and health.

The dialogue series is part of the Family Diplomacy Initiative, Learning Life’s flagship program devoted to connecting families across borders to share and learn together. The June 27 dialogue started with a series of speakers to contextualize and inform the discussion focused on global family trends, followed by open dialogue among all participants. The speakers were Learning Life founder, Paul Lachelier, University of Delaware family trends expert, Bahira Trask, and foster child turned foster parent to seven sons, Joe Toles. The dialogue covered a range of issues including the shrinking size and growing diversity of families, the rising costs of raising families, marriage and violence against women, the stigma of divorce especially for women, and more. The dialogue drew over 50 participants, children to young adults, parents and grandparents from a dozen countries including Brazil, Mexico, USA, Nigeria, Uganda, Egypt, Iraq, Nepal, Pakistan and Bangladesh. To view the full video-recorded dialogue, click here.

All six family dialogues are free, held in English, and occur on Sundays, 12:00-1:30pm EST (New York time) via Zoom. Each dialogue has a different date and topic as follows:

June 27: Global Trends in Family Life: How are families changing worldwide, and how does this impact family health and security?  Topics might include global patterns and trends in family demographics, parenting, childhood, family life, aspirations and viewpoints, etc.

July 25: Health Care Systems: How do health care systems shape family health and security?  What exists and what’s lacking in local-to-global health care institutions? What are some of the major global health trends, threats, and some of the most promising large-scale solutions? 

August 15: Work & Economics: How do economic forces affect family health and security?  Topics might include work and unemployment, workplace safety, automation, income and wealth inequality, economic migration and remittances, work-life balance, etc.   

September 12: Politics: How do local to global politics influence family health and security?  Topics might include government service provision, leadership, civil society, governmental power inequalities between and within nations, immigration and refugee policy, war, human rights, rule of law, corruption, legal discrimination, etc.

October 10: The Environment: How do natural and man-made environmental conditions, local to global, impact family health and security?  Topics might include home and neighborhood crime and safety, community life, green space, housing and segregation, transportation, pollution, climate change, etc.  

November 14: Education & Leisure: How do education and leisure time activities influence family health and security? Topics might include formal and informal education, leisure patterns and trends, literacy, early childhood education, gender and class inequalities, etc.   

To participate in the dialogues, please complete this pre-dialogues survey. The survey offers more information plus the Zoom link for all the dialogues. Note: Because these are family dialogues, you should participate with one or more members of your family in the same room, whether siblings, parents, grandparents, cousins, in-laws or other family members. If family members are not available or willing, please invite one or more friends or housemates. Everyone who plans to attend at least one of the six family dialogues should fill out the pre-survey linked above.