The fabric of American society is being tested this year—straining against a deluge of discord, division, intolerance, violence, and fear. In the coming months, the forces that want to pull us apart are likely to get even louder.

We believe the true story of this nation, its values, and its people is being drowned out as never before—we’re at risk of losing sight of who we really are.

But we also believe that each of us has the power to do something about it.

Through November, StoryCorps and Upworthy will release a series of real-life stories told by everyday Americans that speak to our best selves. Stories that amplify love over hate and empathy over fear. Stories that build bridges of understanding between people and help us recognize our shared humanity.

We’re asking every American to step up and participate not just by sharing these stories with others, but also by reaching out to someone different from them to ask about where they come from, what they care about, and who they love.

Asking questions and listening intently to other people’s stories is a powerful force for good. If we all take one hour this year to do it, we’ll strengthen our national fabric at a time when the divisions seem insurmountably wide. Because when we take the time to listen to each other’s stories, we see the beauty, poetry, and grace hiding in plain sight all around us.

During these challenging times, this series will inspire us to imagine something better for ourselves and for our country.

It will remind us #WhoWeAre.

Dave Isay
Founder, StoryCorps

Peter Koechley & Eli Pariser
Co-Founders, Upworthy

Episodes 1-12 produced with support from Steven Spielberg’s Righteous Persons Foundation and Delta Air Lines.
View the complete series.