Summer of Impact

“Not everything that is faced can be changed; but nothing can be changed until it is faced.” – James Baldwin

The time is now to embrace dialogue and the need for change here in the United States and around the world.

To that end, we are proud to present a "Summer of Impact" that will highlight the transformative work of our students, educators and artists with a variety of events and campaigns designed to amplify narratives that need to be heard.

We invite you to lean into the times and learn how you can join our movement to create a more empathetic world.

Ongoing Workshops

Attend a virtual story exchange, become a trained N4 facilitator, or bring your questions to an Ask N4 webinar. For a full calendar of events, visit

migraré Story Exchange

Friday, August 14- Sunday, August 16 (by invitation only)

Like literature, Narrative 4 guides us into the complexities of the stories of others. Storytelling awakens us to the beauty, tragedy, humor, wonder, variety, commonality and endless possibilities of human interaction. During these troubled times, we are humbled and hopeful to present a virtual story exchange on the topic of race and racial divides. This pilot project, which is modeled on our 2016 National Magazine Award-winning Guns and Empathy story exchange, will be documented so that it can be used as an educational tool to help change the narrative around race and racism in schools and communities around the world.  

Students from University High School in the Bronx, New York and Floyd Central High School in Eastern, Kentucky will lead the three-day project which will be curated by N4 founding member Darrell Bourque, whose collection of poetry, migraré, conjures a vivid, poignant meditation on pressing issues of migration, difference and acceptance in the modern world. Other artists who will be advising the project include Iranian-American author Lila Azam Zanganeh and Jamaican-American author Marlon James.

The fundamental question is: What happens when, like the students from Kentucky and the Bronx, we actually get to know one another?   How do borders get taken down?  How do we shatter stereotypes?  And how can we —both together and apart—turn empathy into action on the ground?   

migraré: Poetry Reading and Roundtable

Saturday, August 15, 1PM EST

“migraré translated: I will move.

Every moment in the grand march of history is sacred and exciting. But there is no moment as sacred and exciting as the moment of Now. Today we can choose to remain calcified and static and frozen in who we think we are, in old identities, in old models. Or, we can move into the creation of new languages of being, new structures of being, new ways of seeing into each other’s suffering and into each other’s beauty. Not only can we do these things, we can save ourselves in the process, redeem ourselves in the sanctity of brother, sister, neighbor, planet, place, family.”

—Darrell Bourque, author of migraré

Join us for a reading and roundtable with N4 founding artist and poet Darrell Bourque, painter Bill Gingles, N4 Master Practitioner and poet Faisal Mohyuddin, N4 board chair and co-founder of the Telos Group, Greg Khalil, and N4 Global Student Ambassador Malak Lahham.

Click here to register.    

Synchronicity: A Celebration of Music and Literature

Sunday, August 30, 4PM EST

Like great art and literature, Narrative 4 takes all of us into the depths and complexities of other souls and enables virtual strangers to inhabit the depth and complexities of their own. In the end, it awakens us to the beauty, tragedy, humor, wonder, variety, commonality and endless possibilities of human interaction. Join us for our 9th annual – and now virtual! – celebration of music and literature, entitled “Synchronicity.”

Ten renowned authors and four celebrated musicians will weave a symphony of sounds designed to add an exclamation point to our Summer of Impact, while launching the academic year ahead. This evening will lay the foundation for our global arts network, which is designed to harness the power of stories to build capacity for compassion. The music of the world suggests that stories lead to action and ultimately to enormous change.  Watch as lyrics and poetry help build greater trust in our world one synchronistic story at a time.

Past Events

Check out the links below for more information about our Summer of Impact events.


Wednesday, July 15, 2020, 12 noon EST

Narrative 4 is pleased to launch A Summer of Impact with Apeirogon on Wednesday, July 15th at 12 noon EST, an event designed to highlight the mission and work of Narrative 4 through great literature. New York Times best-selling author and N4 co-founder, Colum McCann, will be joined in conversation with Bassam Aramin and Rami Elhanan, who are the two main, real life characters in McCann’s new novel, Apeirogon.

The event will be moderated by N4 student ambassadors Malak Lahham from Nazareth, Israel, and Sinead O’Reilly from Wexford, Ireland. World renowned violinist, Colm Mac Con Iomaire, will make a  special appearance and perform music he wrote and recorded based on the novel’s themes. 

Click here to watch a recording of the live event.

Hotel Everest

Hotel Everest: Online Movie Screening and Live Q&A

Wednesday, July 22, 12PM EST

Hotel Everest is a documentary about individuals who have the courage to overcome ancient hatreds, fear and mistrust to strive for self-determination and peace. It follows the story of Israelis and Palestinians who come together to understand the humanity in “the other,” forge connections that promote empathy, understanding and, in their wildest hopes, peace. Hotel Everest is not a historical account of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict but a contemporary, experiential film about living within it.

Register to receive a link to view the film. Then join us for a live Q&A with the film’s director, Claudia Sobral, and one of the film’s protagonists, Eden Fuchs, moderated by Greg Khalil, co-founder and president of the Telos Group, and N4 board chair.

Click here to watch a recording of the live event.

“Empathy Eats” Live!

Wednesday, July 22, 4:00PM EST

In celebration of our new student cookbook, Empathy Eats, N4 student ambassadors are going live on Instagram with Chef David Stample, creative director of InCucina in New York City. Chef David will talk to students about the field exchange program, the Empathy Eats experience, and how good food brings people together. Join the conversation on Tasting Table‘s Instagram page. 

Little Family

Wednesday, July 29, 1PM EST

The incredible students, educators and administrators in the N4 family know that reading great literature has proven to be directly tied to an increase in civic engagement. To that end, we are amassing a vast network of artists who have the tools to transform education by using their considerable talents and connections to strengthen and diversify every facet of Narrative 4.

One such artist is N4 founding member and co-chair of our artists network, Ishmael Beah. Ishmael’s new novel, Little Familywill be the focal point of this event as we dive into what it means to turn empathy into action in the Joe Slovo Township of Port Elizabeth, South Africa. Several students and educators from the region who are determined to change the narrative of this community by turning trash into treasure will join him during this highly interactive event. There will be videos, chats, art, hope, song and perhaps a very special musical guest, so stay tuned!

Click here to watch a recording of the live event.

The Narrative 4 Summer of Impact is generously underwritten by Karen Hollins and The Elizabeth Foundation.