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DO ONE THING and BetterWorld Kids Clubs are projects of The EMILY Fund (The Emily Silverstein Fund, Inc.)


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* “The family is the school of duties - founded on love”
-- Felix Adler

* “If you have only one smile in you, give it to the people you love. Don't be surly at home, then go out in the street and start grinning 'Good morning' at total strangers.”
-- Maya Angelou

* If tolerance, respect and equity permeate family life, they will translate into values that shape societies, nations and the world.
Kofi Annan

"Poverty devastates families, communities and nations. It causes instability and political unrest and fuels conflict."
Kofi Annan

let us all reaffirm our commitment to improving the well- being of families throughout the world.
Kofi Annan

The global work of the United Nations is not without reason compared to that of a family -- striving for a common goal in concert with all members for a better future.
Kofi Annan

The future of peace and prosperity that we seek for all the world's peoples needs a foundation of tolerance, security, equality and justice. That foundation is the family. It is only by protecting families, from famine as well as from fragmentation, that they can prosper and contribute to the family of nations that is the United Nations.
Kofi Annan

We must restore the sacredness of the family as a bedrock of humane values everywhere, in peace as well as in war.
Kofi Annan

The ways in which families are formed, function and evolve vary greatly from country to country, as do perceptions of the family's role in society. But in any culture, the family provides the natural framework in which individuals -- especially children - receive the emotional, financial and material support indispensable to their development. It is within the family that children learn the values that will guide them for the rest of their lives. It is within the family that they form their earliest relationships, learn to communicate with others and interact with the world around them. It is within the family that the notion of human rights becomes a reality lived on a daily basis. If tolerance, respect and equity permeate family life, they will translate into values that shape societies, nations and the world.
Kofi Annan

the happiness of any society begins with the well being of the families that live in it.
Kofi Annan

"Peace in society depends upon peace in the family."
-- Augustine

The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other's life.
-- Richard Bach

We never know the love of our parents for us till we have become parents.”
-- Henry Ward Beecher

* Peace is the beauty of life. It is sunshine. It is the smile of a child, the love of a mother, the joy of a father, the togetherness of a family. It is the advancement of man, the victory of a just cause, the triumph of truth. Peace is all of these and more and more.
-- Menachem Begin


* Most families need both parents to work. Moms need to be able to work and earn fair pay and have the flexibility in their jobs to also be primary caretakers.
-- Joan Blades

The family. We were a strange little band of characters trudging through life sharing diseases and toothpaste, coveting one another's desserts, hiding shampoo, borrowing money, locking each other out of our rooms, inflicting pain and kissing to heal it in the same instant, loving, laughing, defending, and trying to figure out the common thread that bound us all together.
--Erma Bombeck

When you look at your life, the greatest happinesses are family happinesses.
~ Joyce Brothers

You would think that those who are always talking about family values would want to create an environment of permanent relationships for people of the same sex. But they're not advocating family values. They're advocating their values.
- Willie Brown

* More than ever before, there is a global understanding that long-term social, economic, and environmental development would be impossible without healthy families, communities, and countries.
-- Gro Brundtland

* The lack of emotional security of our American young people is due, I believe, to their isolation from the larger family unit. No two people - no mere father and mother - as I have often said, are enough to provide emotional security for a child. He needs to feel himself one in a world of kinfolk, persons of variety in age and temperament, and yet allied to himself by an indissoluble bond which he cannot break if he could, for nature has welded him into it before he was born.
~ Pearl S. Buck


"In family life, love is the oil that eases friction, the cement that binds closer together, and the music that brings harmony."
-- Eva Burrows

* There is nothing more important than a good, safe, secure home.
-- Rosalynn Carter

Family is the first social unit for developing the qualities of the heart. A true family grows and moves through life together, inseparable in the heart. Whether a biological family or an extended family of people attracted to each other based on heart resonance and mutual support, the word "family" implies warmth, a place where the core feelings of the heart are nurtured. Family values represent the core values and guidelines that parents and family members hold in high regard for the well-being of the family. Sincere family feelings are core heart feelings. They are the basis for true family values. While we have differences, we remain "family" by virtue of our heart connection. Family provides necessary security and support, and acts as a buffer against external problems. A family made up of secure people generates a magnetic power that can get things done. They are the hope for real security in a stressful world.
-- Doc Childre and Howard Martin, The HeartMath Solution

To understand your parents' love, you must raise children yourself.
-- Chinese proverb

To put the world right in order, we must first put the nation in order; to put the nation in order, we must first put the family in order; to put the family in order, we must first cultivate our personal life; we must first set our hearts right.
-- Confucius

* We all have families who are longing for peace in the world and an end to the suffering caused by poverty, disease, and hunger. Untold numbers of our friends, our neighbors, our parents, and our children, are hoping that there is more understanding, more generosity, more genuine friendship, and more caring among people of all faiths and cultures.
-- John Conyers

Global Family Day provides a way in which every man, woman, and child in the United States can help to reduce suffering at home, repair our damaged image abroad, and help us remember that in the end, all people belong to the same human family.
-- John Conyers

* I draw from my family and my friends and I feel like that small-town person. The achievements, the materialistic possessions have really become to mean less. They mean nothing.
-- Sheryl Crow
* What else do we all want, each one of us, except to love and be loved, in our families, in our work, in all our relationships?
-- Dorothy Day

* "The greatest gift we can give to our children is to raise them in a culture of peace."
-- Louise Diamond

* Family is the most important thing in the world.
-- Princess Diana

"A man should never neglect his family for business."
-- Walt Disney

No success in public life can compensate for failure in the home.
-- Benjamin Disraeli

The family is the nucleus of civilization.
-- Ariel and Will Durant

If you as parents cut corners, your children will too. If you lie, they will too. If you spend all your money on yourselves and tithe no portion of it for charities, colleges, churches, synagogues, and civic causes, your children won't either. And if parents snicker at racial and gender jokes, another generation will pass on the poison adults still have not had the courage to snuff out.
-- Marian Wright Edelman

* Family is not an important thing, it's everything.
~Michael J. Fox

* He that raises a large family does, indeed, while he lives to observe them, stand a broader mark for sorrow; but then he stands a broader mark for pleasure too
-- Benjamin Franklin

To nourish children and raise them against odds is in any time, any place, more valuable than to fix bolts in cars or design nuclear weapons.
-- Marilyn French


"We need a new political movement of women and men toward a new society."
-- Betty Friedan

* Women will only have true equality when men share with them the responsibility of bringing up the next generation.
-- Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Families are about love overcoming emotional torture.
-- Matt Groening

The best inheritance a parent can give to his children is a few minutes of their time each day."
-- M. Grundler

* If we are too busy, if we are carried away every day by our projects, our uncertainty, our craving, how can we have the time to stop and look deeply into the situation-our own situation, the situation of our beloved one, the situation of our family and of our community, and the situation of our nation and of the other nations?
-- Thich Nhat Hanh

The most important thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother.
-- Theodore Hesburgh

Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family. Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.
-- Jane Howard (1935-1996) US journalist, writer

No matter what you've done for yourself or for humanity, if you can't look back on having given love and attention to your own family, what have you really accomplished?
-- Lee Iacocca

One laugh of a child will make the holiest day more sacred still.
~ Robert G. Ingersoll

* Your children need your presence more than your presents.
-- Jesse Jackson

* The happiest moments of my life have been the few which I have passed at home in the bosom of my family. ~Thomas Jefferson

The happiness of the domestic fireside is the first boon of Heaven; and it is well it is so, since it is that which is the lot of the mass of mankind.
~Thomas Jefferson, 1813

The family is the corner stone of our society. More than any other force it shapes the attitude, the hopes, the ambitions, and the values of the child. And when the family collapses it is the children that are usually damaged. When it happens on a massive scale the community itself is crippled. So, unless we work to strengthen the family, to create conditions under which most parents will stay together, all the rest — schools, playgrounds, and public assitance, and private concern — will never be enough.
-- Lyndon Johnson

The goals of our public welfare program must be positive and constructive. [The welfare program] must stress the integrity and preservation of the family unit. It must contribute to the attack on dependency, juvenile delinquency, family breakdown, illegitimacy, ill health, and disability. It must reduce the incidence of these problems, prevent their occurrence and recurrence, and strengthen and protect the vulnerable in a highly competitive world.
-- John F. Kennedy

"We want simply to live in peace
We want to raise up our children
And save our brothers and sisters...
We want our families to remain whole.
Let us walk out of our isolation and join one another.
Let us walk out of our tears and screams of pain."
-- Imane Khalifeh

* We teach academic subjects and we assume life skills will somehow be acquired along the way. Not a safe assumption! The curriculum has to include things like communication, conflict resolution, parenting, family dynamics, critical thinking, values, ethics.
-- Azim Khamisa

* Families survive, one way or another. You have a tie, a connection that exists long after death, through many lifetimes.
-- Jessica Lange


Becoming responsible adults is no longer a matter of whether children hang up there pajamas or put dirty towels in the hamper, but whether they care about themselves and others -- and whether they see everyday chores as related to how we treat this planet.
-- Eda Leshan

* Love is the chain whereby to bind a child to its parents.
-- Abraham Lincoln

* We can still alter our course. It is NOT too late. We still have options. We need the courage to change our values to the regeneration of our families, the life that surrounds us.
~ Chief Oren Lyons

* "Family is everything. Family comes first. It's not what I expected it to be, but nothing ever is."
-- Madonna

* "... plain, old, simple kindness: to other people, to your family. Love for other people. I think that’s another very important part of morality, being genuinely compassionate and concerned about the feelings and well being of other people, especially those that depend on you directly."
-- George McGovern

* Nobody has ever before asked the nuclear family to live all by itself in a box the way we do. With no relatives, no support, we've put it in an impossible situation.
-- Margaret Mead

"It takes ONE FAMILY to make a difference in this COMMUNITY. It takes ONE PERSON to make a difference in this FAMILY."
-- Nisandeh Neta

Children are the seed for peace or violence in the future, depending on how they are cared for and stimulated. Thus, their family and community environment must be sown to grow a fairer and more fraternal world, a world to serve life and hope.
-- Zilda Arns Neumann

If you look deeply into the palm of your hand, you will see your parents and all generations of your ancestors. All of them are alive in this moment. Each is present in your body. You are the continuation of each of these people.”
-- Thich Nhat Hanh

* "If we are peaceful, if we are happy, we can smile and blossom like a flower, and everyone in our family, our entire society, will benefit from our peace."
-- Thich Nhat Hanh

Family is just accident.... They don't mean to get on your nerves. They don't even mean to be your family, they just are.
~Marsha Norman

* Of all the rocks upon which we build our lives, we are reminded today that family is the most important.
-- Barack Obama

Of all the rocks upon which we build our lives, we are reminded today that family is the most important. And we are called to recognize and honor how critical every father is to that foundation. They are teachers and coaches. They are mentors and role models. They are examples of success and the men who constantly push us toward it. But if we are honest with ourselves, we'll admit that what too many fathers also are is missing – missing from too many lives and too many homes. They have abandoned their responsibilities, acting like boys instead of men. And the foundations of our families are weaker because of it.
-- Barack Obama

"The family unit plays a critical role in our society and in the training of the generation to come."
-- Sandra Day O'Connor

We are all part of the human family and we should be about doing what all good families do - caring for our less fortunate brothers and sisters.
- Dan O'Neill, Founder, Mercy Corps


We are one big family of people, trying to make our way through the unfolding puzzle of life. We are all connected to one another in the heart. Connecting with the ultimate source of love is possible through discovering the hidden power in your heart.
-- Sara Paddison, Hidden Power of the Heart

Family isn't about whose blood you have. It's about who you care about.
-- Trey Parker and Matt Stone, South Park, Ike's Wee Wee, 1998

Our most basic instinct is not for survival but for family. Most of us would give our own life for the survival of a family member, yet we lead our daily life too often as if we take our family for granted.
~Paul Pearshall

* I think a hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles. They are the real heroes, and so are the families and friends who have stood by them.
-- Christopher Reeve

Your family and your love must be cultivated like a garden. Time, effort, and imagination must be summoned constantly to keep any relationship flourishing and growing.
-- Jim Rohn

There can be hope only for a society which acts as one big family, not as many separate ones.
-- Anwar Sadat

* "Good parents give their children Roots and Wings. Roots to know where home is, wings to fly away and exercise what's been taught them."
-- Jonas Salk

* "I want my child to walk in a world guided by love. This means that everybody will have a job, or the resources to take care of basic needs. A world where families are not oppressed and are connected to their neighbors and their communities, where the best in humanity is honored. That's when we will truly be at peace."
-- Malika Sanders

* "I feel my family's needs are a priority. I'm not comfortable with the idea of serving the many and ignoring my family."
-- Susan Sarandon

Feelings of worth can flourish only in an atmosphere where individual differences are appreciated, mistakes are tolerated, communication is open, and rules are flexible -- the kind of atmosphere that is found in a nurturing family.
-- Virginia Satir

* Perhaps the greatest social service that can be rendered by anybody to this country and to mankind is to bring up a family.
-- George Bernard Shaw

A happy family is but an earlier heaven
-- George Bernard Shaw

American families have always shown remarkable resiliency, or flexible adjustment to natural, economic, and social challenges. Their strengths resemble the elasticity of a spider web, a gull's skillful flow with the wind, the regenerating power of perennial grasses, the cooperation of an ant colony, and the persistence of a stream carving canyon rocks. These are not the strengths of fixed monuments but living organisms. This resilience is not measured by wealth, muscle or efficiency but by creativity, unity, and hope. Cultivating these family strengths is critical to a thriving human community.
-- Ben Silliman

The ideal of "a family" is one of the most basic models of what a better world can be like. In a perfect family, the members are joined by bonds of love; they are a team, helping each other meet all of their physical and emotional needs. Of course no family is perfect, but a family that strives together to become a "family for a better world" can help each member to feel more fulfilled and better about themselves and the world. They also provide a real-life example of how the human family can work together to create a better world.
-- Robert Alan Silverstein

However sugarcoated and ambiguous, every form of authoritarianism must start with a belief in some group's greater right to power, whether that right is justified by sex, race, class, religion, or all four. However far it may expand, the progression inevitably rests on unequal power and airtight roles within the family.
-- Gloria Steinem

"The whole world is one family."
-- Sun Yat-sen

"A family is a place where principles are hammered and honed on the anvil of everyday living."
-- Charles Swindoll

* Smile at each other, smile at your wife, smile at your husband, smile at your children, smile at each other - it doesn't matter who it is and that will help you to grow up in greater love for each other.
~ Mother Teresa

* Every child deserves a chance at a life
filled with love, laughter, friends and family.
-- Marlo Thomas

Every child deserves a chance
at a life filled with love,
laughter, friends and family.
-- Marlo Thomas

Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way
-- Leo Tolstoy

* You don't choose your family. They are God's gift to you, as you are to them.
~Desmond Tutu

Acting is just a way of making a living; the family is life.
-- Denzel Washington

“When I see brokenness, poverty and crime in inner cities, I also see the enormous potential and readiness for transformation and rebirth. We are creating an art form that comes from the heart and reflects the pain and sorrow of people's lives. It also expresses joy, beauty, and love. This process lays the foundation of building a genuine community in which people are reconnected with their families, sustained by meaningful work, nurtured by the care of each other and will together raise and educate their children. Then we witness social change in action.”
-- Lily Yeh


International Day of Families - May 15

Family Day
- September 26



Kids | Youth | Adults | Calendar | Quotes | Heroes | Stories | The EMILY Fund | Scholarships
DO ONE THING and BetterWorld Kids Clubs are projects of The EMILY Fund (The Emily Silverstein Fund, Inc.)
Hero portraits are included for illustration purposes only - no celebrity endorsement implied

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- for a Better

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