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ABOUT US

Here at Healing Dialogue and Action, we see the value in everyone. We want to be a catalyst for positive change. Since our beginnings in 2015, we've been driven by the same ideas we initially founded our Organization upon supporting one another on our healing journeys.

 

​We are a California-based organization that facilitates healing with communities impacted by violence and mass incarceration. We do this by creating safe spaces for workshops and victim-offender dialogues and by beginning a discussion regarding a more restorative approach to the criminal justice system.

 

Healing Dialogue and Action brings together people wounded by violence and broken criminal justice systems. We share our stories and listen deeply with open hearts. We respond with compassion and accompany each other in healing the harm caused by violent crime. We work together to change the criminal justice system so it respects and offers an opportunity for transformation for survivors, offenders, and families.

 

We are creating a world free from violence.

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OUR SPIRIT

Healing Dialogue and Action envisions a world free from violence.

Healing Dialogue and Action (HDA) is an organization that creates healing spaces, and by modeling a restorative approach to the criminal justice system, we create opportunities for survivors of violent crime, incarcerated and formerly incarcerated people, and communities affected by violent crime. We provide lifelong accompaniment services in prisons, juvenile halls, and communities across Southern California. Once individuals engage in our programs, we consider them a part of our extended family.

THE HDA SPIRIT

The Healing Dialogue and Action (HDA) spirit is at the core of all our programs.  The HDA spirit moves without judgment or resentment. It stems from the belief that everyone deserves healing and a second chance. It is rooted in the compassion, empathy, insight, and relatability of our wounded healers who have once walked a similar path and have transcended their past experiences. Ultimately, our wounded healers manifest hope and the potential we all have to become better human beings. 

HDA comprises individuals whose life experiences have given them unique gifts and the ability to restore healing in our communities afflicted by generational trauma. A common thread at HDA is that we continuously face and transform our pain with purpose and intention. We at HDA understand that healing is not a linear, often grueling, lifelong process. Above all, we understand that people who have been harmed and those responsible for the harm need a safe space to be heard, supported, and experience healing. 

HDA is not a group of teachers offering a service. We are a community of wounded healers. We are restorative justice practitioners building genuine relationships with people. Through these connections, we can share insight, knowledge, and unwavering support to help those we accompany discover their unique healing path.

- We believe each survivor and family member is entitled to control his or her own process of healing.


- We recognize that many offenders have suffered trauma and violence.
 
- We believe that healing and strength can come through listening to each other’s experiences, responding with respect and compassion, and being open to crossing false divides.
 
- We believe real change in criminal justice systems will come through the leadership of those whose lives have been affected by violence and criminal justice systems.

OUR
PRINCIPLES

OUR
HISTORY

Healing Dialogue and Action (HDA) was formally founded in 2015 by a team with over 100 years of collective experience in criminal justice reform work. HDA’s co-founder and Executive Director, Javier Stauring, began his career as a chaplain in Los Angeles’ Central Juvenile Hall over 30 years ago. At the time, children as young as 14 years old were being sentenced to life in prison and many of the young people Javier accompanied had little to no hope of ever returning home to their communities. Javier and other leaders in the field began campaigning to end the practice of sentencing children under 18 to life without the possibility of parole in California. In 2012, this dream was realized when SB9 was signed into law. Since then, members of HDA’s founding team have successfully advocated for further legislative reform that take age into consideration during sentencing. Notable victories include the passage of SB 260/261 and Proposition 57. 

 

Healing Dialogue and Action continues to advocate for progressive criminal justice reform through the lens of healing. For the past 8 years, our team has accompanied survivors of violent crime, people experiencing incarceration, and family members of both as they navigate some of the most challenging experiences of their lives. Our advocacy agenda is driven by the lived experience of these individuals as we believe those most affected by the criminal justice system are the true experts. We work to elevate their voices to elected officials, correctional leadership, and other service providers with the intention of creating a justice system that recognizes every individual’s capacity for change and provides healing opportunities for all people impacted by violence. 

 

Since 2015, Healing Dialogue and Action has provided healing programming in more than 15 California prisons, 4 juvenile halls, and communities across Southern California. Our unique approach to bringing together people on both sides of violent crime has had a transformative impact on the lives of hundreds of program participants. Over the past 8 years, our organization has grown from just a single staff member to a team of over 25 and counting. Slowly, but surely, laws and public opinion have shifted to recognize that connection and healing, not punishment and isolation, is the only way to disrupt cycles of violence. We are grateful to be a part of this movement at such an exciting time and look forward to making an even greater impact in the years to come.

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Members of HDA's team advocate in front of the LA Probation Oversight Committee for Marlen Medina, who lost her son Bryan Diaz while he was being held inside Barry J. Nidorf Juvenile Hall.

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John Legend HDA Support

John Legend HDA Support

HDA & Self Care

Healing Dialogue and Action emphasizes the importance of Self-Care as a form of self-love. Our daily work requires us to take time for ourselves individually and as a team to continue our healing journey. To help others, we must first help ourselves. Self-care can mean different things to people because of everyone's unique needs and preferences. For one person, self-care might involve running or doing yoga; for another, it might mean taking a hot bath or reading a book. Some people find that spending time with loved ones is an integral part of their self-care routine, while others prefer some alone time to recharge. Ultimately, self-care is about identifying what makes you feel good, happy, and healthy and making time for those activities and practices. Exploring and experimenting with different self-care strategies is essential to find what works best for you. Here are some photos of our team in real-time self-care.

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HEALED PEOPLE HEAL PEOPLE

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