About our founder

Meet DIY Human's founder, Shari Foos

About Shari Foos, M.S., M.A., M.F.T.

Shari Foos is a Marriage and Family Therapist, adjunct professor, Narrative Medicine scholar and improvisational artist. Shari received a MS in Narrative Medicine from Columbia University and a MA in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University Los Angeles where she founded the Bridge Program, an accredited, yearlong university humanities program, provided at no cost for adults without access to higher education.

Seeing the need for humanistic communities in an increasingly technological world, Shari founded The Narrative Method™ in 2013, providing programs and facilitator training for at-risk populations. In addition, she teaches The Narrative Method™ at Antioch University. In 2018, The Narrative Method launched DIY Human, based on the idea that you don't need a license to use your humanity. DIY Human invited the public to participate in salons, special events and leadership trainings.

Shari was formerly a television and radio writer, improv artist and creator/host of community focused salons and events in and around Los Angeles, bringing together artistic and intellectual communities for entertainment and creative dialogue. Shari serves on the boards of Coalition for Engaged Education and City Kids Foundation and is a co-founder of IKAR LA.

Shari and DIY Human Cards

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The DIY Human Cards were born out of necessity.

 

We were attending the graduation ceremony for a group of homeless women who'd just completed The Narrative Method 12-Week Program. I'd trained the facilitators at one of our skid row partners' facilities in downtown Los Angeles. 

 

It was a tear-jerker! Each woman came up to the podium all dolled up- some of them receiving the first 'diploma' of any kind in their lives. They each spoke with joy and gratitude about how much they'd been impacted by the course and how wonderful it was connect deeply with each other.

They reported increased empathy through learning to closely listen and by imagining the world through the eyes of another. The camaraderie increased their optimism about what was possible for them in the future.

 

As I was leaving, a participant came up to me and said, "Thank you so much for this program. But what are we supposed to do now?" We needed to create a group process that folks could do on their won. It had to be simple and self-expanatory in a vernacular of spoken language that made it easy to relate to.

 

And it worked!

The DIY Human Cards are being used by universities nationally, underserved communities, businesses and diverse individuals.

It's not a game, it's an experience - a fascinating, connective and expansive experience.

You are an innovator and a connector of ideas-- what a brilliant, thought-

provoking set of cards.

Barbara N. MD, Ph.D.

Professor of Human Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University

The exercises facilitated with the DIY Human cards were really instrumental in creating strong bonds between the students. 

Eric P.

 

Wellness Counselor,

NYU Los Angeles

I think they will start a million conversations that will result in communication,

growth, connection and hugs.

Dan R.

Senior VP , Jewish Community Foundation

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©2020 DIY Human is a project of The Narrative Method, an award-winning non-profit offering programs that increase empathy and expand perspectives for many underserved communities, including veterans, youth and homeless. TNM also works in healthcare, higher education and K-12 teachers’ continuing education.