Our Inspiration: “No one asks.”
On an otherwise ordinary summer day in 2006, a granddaughter called her grandmother on the other side of the country. This was the first time the granddaughter had ever reached out  – just to talk. The grandmother told the story of her complicated and difficult childhood, but ended the story with the happiest laugh the granddaughter had ever heard. “No one knows any of this,” the older woman explained. “No one knows because no one asks.” Three years later, the granddaughter started a storytelling group in the basement of her local senior center to reach out to seniors in Philadelphia where she lives, and a blog to share the stories with people of all ages beyond the confines of the basement walls. Visitors from the city’s diverse neighborhoods came to the group and readers from around the world began following the blog. The press, senior venues around the country, and major organizations such as AARP asked the granddaughter for advice and training to start similar groups around the country.

Our Vision: Senior Stories Everywhere
The Best Day of My Life (So Far) – a volunteer-run 501(c)(3) non-profit organization – is not only a senior writing program but an inspirational and intergenerational social network. We empower seniors to discover and share their voices through face-to-face conversation; we engage a global all-ages audience to listen through social media; and we empower teens to join in this global conversation through specific outreach to youth. Our vision is twofold: to establish live storytelling groups across the U.S. with local facilitators, local seniors and local guests, and to build an online library to share the collected stories with everyone, everywhere. To date, we have received the support of media outlets and academic journals, and have been featured at events nationwide – please visit our website for a full listing. To receive stories, LIKE us on Facebook, FOLLOW us on Twitter, and SUBSCRIBE to our free Story Letter.

Our Outcomes: Quality of Life for Everyone
Our work delivers the following outcomes:

  • Decreased social and technological isolation in seniors
  • Decreased symptoms of depression in seniors
  • Increased physical health and motor functioning in seniors
  • Decreased mortality rate in seniors
  • Decreased negative behavior in teens
  • Increased academic achievement in teens
  • Increased self-esteem in teens
  • Improved relationships with peers, teachers and families in teens
  • Increased quality of life in people of all ages
  • Increased level of happiness in people of all ages
  • Increased respect for history in people of all ages
  • And a collection of stories for all ages – and future generations – with unmatched inspirational and historical value
These outcomes are based on evaluations of our program conducted over a 4-year period (2009-2013) by:
  • Department of Neurology, School of Medicine at Drexel University
  • School of Psychology, Social Work and Social Policy at University of South Australia
  • Social Work Department at Long Island University
  • The Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania.
  • AARP Pennsylvania
  • And supported by empirical data (available in our Online Toolkit)
Our Methods: Tested and Proven
Our award-winning and trademarked methods, which are documented by our Founder in 2014 with our Facilitator Training Guide,
are based on:
  • Experience and transformations of over 200 seniors
  • Four full years of testing and development by 80 volunteers
  • Test groups at diverse sites, including: China Coast Community, Hong Kong, China and Kin On Nursing Home, Seattle WA
  • Model satellite hosted in partnership with AARP, at Free Library of Philadelphia, Philadelphia PA
  • Published research and evaluations by international teams