The Reaching Out television series, a sequence of seven 30-minute programs, invites viewers to a healing process that combines racial bridge-building, compassionate caring, and deep ecological awareness.
Reaching Out grows out of ten town-hall meetings in Oakland, California, where 1,000 people came together in dialogue, addressing the question "What keeps us separate--and what can we do about it?"
The community meetings were hosted by Ram Dass, author of Compassion in Action, and featured
African-American urban environmentalist Carl Anthony,
Roman Catholic priest Thomas Berry,
Latino/Chicano diversity trainer Martín Cano,
Nuclear test-ban activist Carolyn Cottom,
Native American diversity trainer Lakota Hardin,
Native American attorney Winona LaDuke,
AIDS care-giver Bharat Lindemood,
Buddhist scholar Joanna Macy,
The Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir,
Hasidic rabbi Zalman Schachter,
Australian rainforest activist John Seed,
Mime Robert Shields,
Benedictine monk David Steindl-Rast,
Native Hawaiian traditional spokesperson Mililani Trask,
Latino/Chicano community educator Roberto Vargas,
Christian Evangelical minister Jim Wallis,
Singer-songwriter Cris Williamson.
Reaching Out weaves highlights of interviews, presentations, and performance footage with more intimate dialogues in which course participants, meeting in racially-diverse small groups, share their griefs, express their yearnings, build trust, and find a common vision.
Reaching Out is designed to inspire and equip viewers to further the community healing process depicted in the programs. A viewers guide and website (www.reachingout.org) provide support for home viewing groups and access to resources, and will make possible direct connection among viewers.