Individuals, Family and Community
"So many of our families are new to Universal Education, but are expressing so much excitement as they hear about our program and its purpose.” - Amanda Dofflemeyer, founder of the Wishing Well Children’s Community, Soquel, California, USA

The need

There is an increasing body of scientific evidence concerning the importance of positive values and loving relationships for health and wellbeing, particularly in the early years. Every child, young person and adult who learns to be happier, more satisfied and more peaceful will have a powerful impact on their families and friends, as well as on the wider society.

Despite this, many people do not know where to find the encouragement and support they need to become better parents, grandparents, siblings, neighbours and community leaders.

Universal Education for Compassion and Wisdom aims to gradually fill this gap by providing community-based learning programmes that will enable people of all ages, cultures and traditions to develop their ability to live in an ethical way, to draw out their own unique strengths and positive qualities, and to explore how they can offer service to others.

What Universal Education offers individuals, families and communities

Universal Education learning programmes are rooted in the conviction that every individual has an innate capacity to be kind and wise, which can be developed through nurturing a deeper awareness of how all people and phenomena depend on each other for their existence. Such awareness will naturally lead to a greater sense of responsibility for taking care of both the natural environment and all the different beings that co-exist within it.

The experiential pedagogy and engaging methodologies of Universal Education make it ideally suited to working in family and community settings, where it can be adapted in countless ways to suit the specific situation. Programmes such as The 16 Guidelines for a Happy Life offer a practical framework for helping people explore and discuss profound issues, such as how they think, act, relate and find meaning in life.

In Mexico City, Universal Education community educator Brenda Tapia has developed a programme for children living in poverty, while in Veracruz and Guadalajara, ‘Habits’ groups hold regular meetings to promote the practice of the 16 Guidelines for a Happy Life in the local community. There are annual Universal Education-inspired family camps in Belgium, Italy and Spain, and the 16 Guidelines have been utilised as the basis for a mother and baby group in Queensland, Australia and a long-standing intergenerational project in North Carolina, USA.


The benefits that have been observed amongst individuals and at community level when people engage in Universal Education programme include: stronger motivation to help others; increased confidence as parents and change-makers; better communication between children and parents; and greater resilience in the face of difficulties.

Next steps

Get inspired by browsing the information and stories on this website; find out more about FDCW-recognised programmes such as The 16 Guidelines for a Happy Life and Transformative Mindfulness Methods; and take a look at the online resource for families and educators Ready Set Happy.

Participate in a Universal Education learning programme yourself. After building confidence and familiarity, you are welcome to share or adapt what you have learned in your own family or community.

Request FDCW to provide a learning programme that is specifically tailored to the needs of your community.