The Heart On Your Sleeve Project

October 27, 2021

By Kimberly Cook

I am a 54-year old woman, happily married to my wife of 20 years, we have a dog, cat and two grown kids. Our goal is to make the world a better place each day. I created “The Heart on Your Sleeve Project” to help me do that.

Pledge to Take Action

I tend to be someone people feel comfortable talking to. Whether it’s a close friend— or a total stranger who suddenly strikes up a conversation with me at the grocery store— people “wear their heart on their sleeve” and share personal stories with me. At the end of these honest conversations, they often say how much they appreciate my willingness to listen.

You might be this kind of person, too. Do people seek you out for advice and guidance? What if there was a way for you to let others clearly know that you are there for them, willing to listen without judgment, no matter what they are going through?

Welcome to The Heart on Your Sleeve Project™. We have created a heart symbol you can display to send a clear message that you are someone who is available and willing to listen. And when your company, school, or organization signs the PLEDGE, your whole team is showing that acceptance of others is a core value.

Now imagine these heart symbols displayed in every middle and high school across the country, within companies’ human resource departments and on their websites, throughout doctor’s offices and hospitals— all of the various places people go to find help. What if kids and grown-ups alike could feel confident that when they see The Heart on Your Sleeve Project™ symbol, they are in a safe place to be their true selves?

My project is asking schools, businesses, and organizations to sign this Pledge in order to create more safe spaces in our communities and place heart stickers around their building as a reminder:

“We, the members of _______ are very proud of the environment we have created. We are also committed to getting better all the time. We highly value you as a member of our community and want to do our part to ensure you always feel welcome, respected and accepted. 

To be clear, we PLEDGE the following:

To strive to maintain an environment that is free from judgment or criticism.

To serve as role models with zero tolerance for discrimination, harassment, or any form of bullying in response to a person sharing his/her/their true self.

To educate ourselves about different races, religions, orientations, and preferences, and the unique challenges faced by people based on how they identify. 

To refrain from disrespectful language, and instead, use language that is inclusive of all people.

To listen to concerns voiced by the community and be willing to make immediate changes to improve our culture.

To provide a safe space that fosters learning and builds future leaders.

To seek outside professional help if we are faced with an issue we cannot successfully handle internally.

To post The Heart on Your Sleeve Project™ symbol everywhere as a reminder of our commitment to being open-minded, supportive, and ready to listen.

Respectfully yours, _________”

If you’d like to join the movement, please feel free to contact: https://www.theheartonyoursleeveproject.com/contact-us

Pledge to Take Action