Mission

The International Forgiveness Institute is dedicated to helping people gain knowledge about forgiveness and to use that knowledge for personal, group, and societal renewal.

The IFI is an outgrowth of the social scientific research done at the University of Wisconsin-Madison since 1985 by Dr. Robert Enright and his colleagues. Professor Enright was looking for a way to disseminate the findings of that research, and the research and writings by others exploring forgiveness, to interested people in all walks of life. The IFI has served as that forum ever since.

Since 2002, the IFI has focused almost exclusively on a new and challenging activity–the development of forgiveness education curricula for children in war-torn, impoverished, and/or oppressed areas of the globe. Our classroom research shows that as children learn about forgiveness, their levels of anger go down. Our theory is that such anger reduction in students Heart-shaped earthwill help them improve their interpersonal relationships to the point that they can begin to see, as they mature into adults, the best path toward justice. We believe that forgiveness education is one path toward peace.

IFI’s forgiveness education materials are being used not only in Belfast, Northern Ireland, but around the world. Here is a Geographic Distribution Summary that lists each of the 16 Wisconsin cities, 23 U.S. states, and 31 foreign countries where IFI has provided materials during the past few years.