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Our vision and principles

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Stand Together Vision & Principles
Our vision

Stand Together is working to move toward a society based on the principles of human progress — one of equal rights and mutual benefit where everyone has the opportunity to live a life of meaning and succeed by benefitting others.

We advance this vision by partnering with social entrepreneurs who apply these principles to empower people to realize their potential. As the effectiveness of this approach becomes widely recognized, it inspires movements that bring society closer to this ideal.

These movements create paradigm shifts, transforming society’s key institutions, so rather than control people from the top down, they consistently empower people from the bottom up.

An "empowerment paradigm"

Our vision is informed by history’s profound lesson: Every person has a gift, and progress comes when we empower everyone to find and use it to help others improve their lives.

Todd Rose, a Stand Together board member and co-founder of the think tank Populace, shows how this "empowerment paradigm" transformed the world and animates Stand Together’s work today.

The principles of empowerment

History shows that the more societies reject a paradigm of power and instead embrace empowerment, the more progress they unlock. Here are some of the core principles that empower every person.

Dignity
A deep belief in, and respect for, the inherent worth of every person that enables people to live their lives as they see fit with due regard for the equal and inalienable rights of others and with assurance of equal protection for those rights under the law.
Bottom Up
People succeed when their interaction is organized by general rules of just conduct rather than having to agree on concrete aims, enabling those with personal knowledge of a problem to discover solutions that get the best results.
Openness
The free movement of ideas, resources, and people generates knowledge, innovation, and opportunity, fueling progress throughout society.
Self-Actualize
People live lives of meaning when they continually discover, develop, and apply their unique gifts to benefit others.
Mutual Benefit
People succeed by creating value for others, motivating them to assist rather than harm one another.
Our principles in practice

Learn more about how Stand Together and our partners apply the principles of empowerment to transform people's lives and society as a whole.

Collage of a person filling out a college application and other people 2 stories show what happens when we stop relying on college degrees

LaShana Lewis and Brandy Grace were very qualified, but not having a college degree held them back. 

Students and teachers celebrating throwing confetti in the air. Look inside the incredible school even MrBeast couldn’t believe

Educators come from worldwide to observe how teachers at this school engage their students.

An image of a door opening in a dark room and light shining through. Many organizations say they are ‘open.’ But what does that mean?

Why stretching outside our comfort zone is good for society.

A collage of people sitting in chairs speaking during a conference. Employees aren’t finding purpose at work. These 3 big ideas would help

Three simple changes would build a system where people and businesses reach their full potential.

© 2024 Stand Together. All rights reserved. Stand Together and the Stand Together logo are trademarks and service marks of Stand Together. Terms like “we,” “our,” and “us,” as well as “Stand Together,” and “the Stand Together community,” are used here for the sake of convenience. While the individuals and organizations to which those terms may refer share and work toward a common vision—including, but not limited to, Stand Together Foundation, Stand Together, Charles Koch Foundation, Stand Together Trust, Stand Together Fellowships, and Americans for Prosperity—each engages only in those activities that are consistent with its nonprofit status.
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