In late 2016, leaders from six Miami organizations heard locals expressing a need for stronger relationships, deeper understanding, widespread kindness, and increased empathy. These leaders - Roberta Shevin (MCCJ), Nancy Ancrum (Miami Herald), Stephanie Sylvestre (The Children’s Trust), Rebecca Mandelman and Matthew Beatty (The Miami Foundation), Claudia Grillo and Tammy Klingler (United Way of Miami-Dade), and Rebecca Fishman Lipsey (Radical Partners) - came together and decided to take action.
Together, they dreamed up 10 Days of Connection, an initiative to confront increased divisiveness facing communities across the country. It is an annual community led challenge inspiring all locals to step out of their comfort zone and come together with people from different backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives, to unite in our shared humanity.
In 2018, the initiative expanded into Broward county through the leadership of Cori Meltzer (CFM Mediation), making the 10 Days of Connection a regional endeavor. This year, 185 leaders and organizations came together to challenge everyone in Miami-Dade and Broward counties to step out of their comfort zones and connect with people who are not like them, in whatever way they were ready. There were over 120 events hosted during the 10 days and thousands of locals participated.
Moving into its third year, Leslie Miller Saiontz (Achieve Miami) and Claudia Grillo (University of Miami) joined the leadership team alongside the founding group. The 2019 initiative was also supported by the Jewish Federation of Broward County and the Community Foundation of Broward.
We’re extremely grateful to the 180+ members of our host committee and what we’ve built together!
Miami Dade County Census Group
Muslim Communities Association Miami
Puerto Rican Women Who Dine
To learn more about the initiative’s impact, check out our 2018 and 2019 impact reports.