Brief history of the Charter for Compassion and Compassionate Toledo

2008 – Karen Armstrong, scholar of World Religions, gave a TED talk declaring that Compassion was the core of all world religions. Her wish was that religious leaders would draw up a Charter for Compassion.

2009 – Distilled from tens of thousands of submissions, the Charter for Compassion was unveiled. Judy Trautman, as Communications Chair for the North American Interfaith Network, was one of the communicators to launch it. Individuals were asked to sign it.

2010 – Seattle Washington sought to become the first Compassionate City. Greater Toledo and NW Ohio launched its initiative to be designated as a compassionate region.

2011 – Louisville announced that it was the most compassionate city. Jon Ramer of Seattle took that as a challenge and launched the Compassion Games, an annual coopetition to prove a city is the most compassionate. Everyone is a winner.

2012 – Heroes of Compassion Gallery was initiated. Each year individuals and organizations doing extraordinary compassionate work are nominated and selected. Heroes are presented at the Annual Banquet of the MultiFaith Council. The Heroes of Compassion plaque resides at the County Commissioners offices in Government Center.

Mayor D. Michael Collins at Government Center - Mayor Collins signs after Paula and Tina

2014 – Greater Toledo and NW Ohio was officially designated as the first Compassionate Region with a signing ceremony at Government Center. The Charter for Compassion was signed by then Mayor D. Michael Collins, Toledo City Council President Paula Hicks-Hudson, and Lucas County Commissioner Tina Skeldon Wozniak. The Compassion team received a letter of endorsement from TMACOG [Toledo Metropolitan Area Council of Governments], a statement of support from the University of Toledo and a congratulatory letter from United States Senator Sherrod Brown. A Compassion Convention was held in the Convention Center to gather 90 organizations that do compassionate work. The MultiFaith Banquet that weekend featured a welcome from Tom Williams of Louisville and a keynote address by Fr. James Bacik.

2014 – Present -- In September Greater Toledo and NW Ohio played its first Compassion Games and has had leading numbers of volunteers and volunteer hours every year. Compassion Forums have been held annually on critical issues, such as, housing, constructive conversation, and a Poor People’s Campaign Teach-In.