“When my mom died, I felt achingly alone. It was an isolation that I had never experienced before. But as soon as I started attending dinners about a month and a half later, that loneliness abated. It was kind of a Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz moment — I was stepping out of a completely colorless world and back into something that was richer and more vibrant than before. I felt like I could start reclaiming my life again. The Dinner Party is life-changing. Full stop."
— Alix, Philadelphia
To transform life after loss from an isolating experience into one marked by community support, candid conversation, and forward movement using the age old practice of breaking bread.
We foresee a day in which people find amidst their deepest struggle the source of their deepest strength by connecting with others who’ve been there too, in an environment that’s accessible and familiar, and marked by deep connections over time; a day in which grief is free of stigma and silence; and in which those who’ve lived through loss or hardship, whatever its form, are recognized not as objects of pity, but as better listeners and better leaders, characterized by profound empathy, resilience, agency, and a commitment to living a life of meaning.
The Dinner Party is building a worldwide community of 20- and 30-somethings who have each experienced the loss of a parent, partner, child, sibling, or close friend. We screen, train and onboard a growing network of more than 300 peer hosts, and connect them to 10-15 would-be Dinner Partiers nearby, who share a similar age and loss experience. We then provide ongoing coaching and support in order to sustain each group over the course of a year or more. Since January 2014, we have grown from a few dozen people to more than 3,000, currently active at more than 275 tables in 100+ cities and towns worldwide. We’ve been featured on NPR’s Morning Edition, CNN, NYT, O Magazine, BuzzFeed, and dozens of other publications, and as a case study in various books, including The Upside of Stress, The New Better Off, The Power of Meaning, and Death Over Dinner.
Let's do dinner, shall we?
Since January 2014:
We’ve reviewed 10,000 applications to join or host a table.
led by 313 volunteer hosts…
Over 3,000 of those are current Partiers…
in nearly 100 cities and towns…
across more than 275 active tables…
across 6 countries, including theUnited States, Canada, Australia, England, Israel and The Netherlands.
In August 2018, with help from a Ph.D. evaluative sociologist, we conducted our first-ever survey of The Dinner Party community. We sent it to 2,456 current and former Dinner Partiers, and received 448 responses, with representation from 151 tables, 129 cities, 32 states, and five countries.
of respondents agree or strongly agree that The Dinner Party has been a transformative experience for them
of respondents agree or strongly agree that The Dinner Party has helped them feel less alone or lonely around their loss
of respondents agree or strongly agree that they would recommend The Dinner Party to a friend who has experienced loss