Project Do Better: Free Books, Lesson Handouts, and Community Collaboration

This project began as the Four Freedoms Movement, formed on the basis of a problem, and the faith that any problem can be solved.

I have been pondering the problem of how to protect children from abusive adults, whether they be family or non-related guardians. The conclusions around this issue are not simple, because the issue, and the underlying causes of child abuse, are also not simple. There is a fairly simple way, however, of improving the lives of kids, and adults who take care of them: make sure they all have decent and safe housing, food, clothing, and health care.

These thoughts reminded me of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s famous Four Freedoms, and I began to wonder what it would take to get us there. The need for a basic safety net for kids, and how to get there from here, led me to imagine a series of steps that we could take, leading to a safer and kinder society, with enough for all of us, and especially for all kids. Breaking those steps up into a set of phases that could be worked on in 15-20 year chunks led me to begin outlining a community manual, just published, for Project Do Better. This book is offered free of charge, as my life’s work. All volunteers who wish to contribute to this project are welcome.

Phase I currently works to focus on four key parts of our Public Domain Infrastructure:

  1. #PublicLibraries,
  2. #UniversalHealthCare,
  3. good #PublicTransportation, and
  4. #ProBono legal aid and Education (aka Public Financial Knowledge Infrastructure),

Phase II builds more empathy via Service

Phase III focuses on universal health care, education, and basic income, and

Phase IV focuses on housing.

While I realize the difficulty of this task, and the impossibility of doing it alone, we must try, if only, in the words of Toni Morrison, “to bear witness” to the possibilities we are missing. As a society, we can definitely Do Better.

The Project Do Better manual presents a vision of what our society could look like as a safer and kinder place for all of us, and ways for communities to ‘chunk’ that vision into local steps. Each phase works in stages, showing what it could look like on the way there, over about 70 years.

I work in the hope of building a full-scale implementation of FDR’s 4 freedoms, starting with the freedom from fear, which I see as being wrapped up part and parcel with the freedom from want. Even a bedsit/room with a kitchenette (pref. with a small bathroom, too) gives both freedom from the want of housing, but also the safety, or a Tiny Condo, designed well, like a very good hotel room/suite, with separate ventilation (if those really exist), well-sealed and sound-proofed with good locks, would do.

Public transportation that is safe and used by the middle and upper classes as well as by the working classes and the poor solves the want of transportation, but also makes our sidewalks safe to walk on, and safe.

These are values which are bound together with empathy and safety, falling under the same practical implementation of freedom from fear, which translates at least partly into freedom from want (and into Phase I’s pro-bono legal and financial education, as well as Phase II’s Adulthood pre-requisites of the three types of self-defense: financial, emotional, and physical).

I also plan to add a page or post on family history research for restorative justice, related specifically to the #GU272, and other universities making scholarships or other types of in-kind reparations available to descendants of slaves held by those institutions. I’m not yet sure where to fit this work in the various phases of the movement, but I think it is important.

Dear Readers, do you have ideas to share on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness, & achieve full potential for All HumanKind?


Click here to read, if you like:

Learning Empathy Through Film and TV Reviews,

Holistic High School and College Algebra Lesson Plans,

           or Long Range Plans, & Historical Fiction Serial Writing

Shira Destinie A. Jones, MPhil, MAT, BsCs

Shira Destinie Jones’ work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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