Tired of the division in our country, communities and even our families? You can do something about it.

Welcome to the Finding Common Ground Unify Challenge!

Join a one-on-one online conversation with another person who may vote or think differently than you do. Share your voice and hear a fresh perspective to help everyone get back to the business of solving problems.

Discuss things that matter in America with an open mind, and make your voice heard.

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Take the first step and have a conversation with a fellow American about goals the country we love.

Sign Up for the Unify Challenge
Illustration - two characters taking the Unify Challenge

What’s the Unify Challenge?

It’s a live one-on-one online conversation (like Zoom) with another person who may live across the state and have a different outlook on things. It’s not a debate. It’s an invitation to have a productive, open conversation with a fellow American to find common ground and talk about issues our country faces.

What’s the conversation about?

You may be thinking… “A video conversation with a complete stranger? What will we talk about?” Don’t worry. We make it super easy.

Together, you’ll talk through questions provided in a conversation guide about issues that matter most in America from education and immigration to justice and healthcare. And you don't have to be “into politics” — no prep needed!

Who can participate?

If you’re over 18 and live in America….you!

When is it?

Join the Challenge on Wednesday, June 15, 2022 at 7pm Eastern.

Illustration - Characters chatting in a Unify Challenge

How does the matching work?

Based on the information you provide when you officially register, we’ll match you across differences. You may be matched with someone who votes differently than you, has a different background, or lives in a different part of the state.

Even though a Challenge pair may vote for candidates from different parties and may watch different cable news channels, they both may care about affordable housing or immigration reform.

Sign up and learn more about matching and what to expect.

What happens if my partner and I don’t get along?

People worry about conflict during the Unify Challenge, but it just doesn’t happen. Thousands of people have taken the Challenge and are surprised by how often they agree with their partner, find common ground, and really enjoy the interaction. Why? People who choose to take the Challenge share a love of country and want to keep it strong, not divided.

It’s also amazing what happens when you are face-to-face on a video call, rather than faceless behind a keyboard on social media. We just are a whole lot friendlier and interested in listening and learning.

However, if at any point during the discussion an issue arises, live support hosts are available to assist.

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Other questions

Is this part of a political campaign? (It's not.)

No. The Unify Challenge is a program developed by Unify America, a cross-partisan nonprofit organization, and we work with partners across the country to share the Challenge with their networks.

Who will I be paired up with? What if we don’t get along?

You will be paired with another person in America who you wouldn’t ordinarily interact with in your daily life. You may not always agree (and that’s the beauty of it!) but everyone does this with the best of intentions. People worry that they'll be paired with a troll or someone combative. In our experience, this simply doesn't happen. But if it does, you can just leave the conversation and contact us.

I’m not a political expert. Do I need to do homework?

Nope. No need to prepare at all.

How are people matched?

Our system tries to match folks who are political opposites first. Sometimes, people who are more politically aligned but are different geographically or demographically get matched. We have a special experience for those Challenge matches!

Will my email address or contact info be shared with my partner?

No. We protect your privacy. Some people really like getting to know each other and may choose to share contact info — but that’s entirely up to you!

Do you screen participants?

People worry about this and wonder if they’ll encounter a troll. To date, we have never had this issue. Unify America attracts folks who are worried about toxic polarization. Most have had politics divide their families and friends. These are people who are part of the “exhausted majority.” On the off-chance you get matched with an idiot, you can always just hit the Help button or simply close your browser.

How much time will it take?

Plan for about an hour. Sometimes it takes less time… and sometimes partners go longer because they are so interested in the conversation.

What kind of computer setup do I need?

You will need a desktop or a laptop computer that you can use for a video call. The experience won’t work on a mobile phone. We will walk you through everything — it’s easy.

Need more details?

Here’s a short video on exactly how the Unify Challenge works:

Miles Taylor

Co-Founder of Renew America Movement

At the Renew America Movement, our mission is to build a nationwide "common-sense coalition" of Americans that's based on principle, not party. We won't always see eye-to-eye on policy, but we agree that America is at its best when our democracy functions as it should. At its most basic level, democracy requires civil debate and the willingness to entertain viewpoints that differ from our own. We're losing that ability, and our democracy is suffering as a result. The reasons for this are many, but the way back is as simple as having a conversation. So let's talk!

brought to you by

The 92nd Street Y, New York is a world-class cultural and community center where people all over the world connect through culture, arts, entertainment and conversation. For over 140 years, we have harnessed the power of arts and ideas to enrich, enlighten and change lives, and the power of community to repair the world.

The Newmark Civic Life Series, a part of 92NY's Belfer Center for Innovation & Social Impact, offers lectures and conversations with leading experts exploring pro-democracy efforts at this critical moment in the US and around the world, supported by Craig Newmark Philanthropies.

Common Ground Committee (CGC) is a nonpartisan, nonprofit 501(c)3 citizen-led organization dedicated to fostering more progress and less division in politics. Since its founding in 2009, CGC has held 14 public forums featuring panelists who have reached over 200 points of consensus. CGC produces the “Let’s Find Common Ground” podcast series. CGC also created the Common Ground Scorecard, a voting tool that scores politicians and candidates for public office on their likelihood to find common ground with the opposite party. Free of political agenda and financial influence, CGC has a singular focus on bringing light, not heat, to public discourse.

Unify America is a nonpartisan, nonprofit on a mission to replace political polarization with collaborative problem-solving. We build interactive experiences which enable members of our community to learn and master critical civic skills alongside others who live outside their cultural, political, racial, geographic and religious bubbles.

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Let’s find the power of different perspectives.

Sign Up for the Unify Challenge
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