Project UnLonely 

Lonely woman looks off into the distanceOur Signature National Initiative

The Foundation for Art & Healing (FAH) launched its signature national initiative, Project UnLonely, in 2016 to address the growing public health concern of social isolation and chronic loneliness. Project UnLonely has three goals: to raise awareness of loneliness and its negative physical and mental health effects, to destigmatize loneliness, and to make programming available to address loneliness. 

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to unfold with uncertainty and anxiety, heightening the urgency to tackle our “crisis of disconnection.” Project UnLonely programs empower individuals and communities to connect through the arts. Our focus is on creative expression as a medium for connection because it’s readily accessible, stimulates the brain, conveys emotion, and fosters a shared reality, all of which contribute to a sense of connection. 

Loneliness is a universal human experience like hunger or thirst. It is a natural signal that something is missing from our lives—in this case, human connection. While everyone experiences loneliness, some people are more susceptible to acute or chronic loneliness. Project UnLonely focuses on addressing loneliness among those most vulnerable: older adults, college students, employees, and individuals within at-risk or marginalized communities.


Millions of older adults struggle with isolation and feelings of loneliness. To improve wellbeing for older adults facing critical health vulnerabilities associated with loneliness, we enable partners to use the arts as an accessible and effective public health solution.

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Young people ages 18 to 22, are significantly more likely to be lonely than any other generation in the U.S. We support higher-education institutions and students by offering creative expression programs that can inspire and improve health and academic performance.

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The loneliness epidemic affects everyone. In particular, it creates significant barriers for population groups such as caregivers, immigrants, LGBTQ+ youth, and veterans. We help communities pull together and strengthen social connections through a suite of program opportunities.

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Many employees are feeling an overwhelming sense of isolation from working remotely or from losing their traditional networks of support at work. We assist businesses in managing and preventing loneliness through innovative and effective programming.

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The new book by The Foundation for Art & Healing Founder, Jeremy Nobel, MD

Project UnLonely book cover

UnLonely Film Festival

Our annual UnLonely Film Festival celebrates the power of storytelling in film. Every year since 2016, we have curated a series of award-winning short films that give voice to the loneliness epidemic and represent the many lived experiences with isolation.

With over 100 films available for free viewing year-round, we help the public empathize with themselves and others by sharing diverse perspectives and situations. Through these resonant, evocative videos we are able to raise awareness of loneliness, increase understanding of the challenges it presents, and remind viewers that they are not alone.

“We created Project UnLonely to help reduce the stigma and burden of loneliness by encouraging people to tap into outlets for creative expression. Today, it is more timely than ever as people around the world struggle with the impact of social isolation. We hope the UnLonely Film Festival offers viewers an opportunity to learn, laugh, cry, smile, and, most importantly, connect.”  – Dr. Jeremy Nobel, Founder & President of the Foundation for Art & Healing

Join Steve Buscemi, Mike Paseornek, and The Foundation for Art & Healing in celebrating the launch of Season 8 of Project UnLonely Films.

The next UnLonely Film Festival is coming in 2025!

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Explore Our Programs

Read about our evidence-based programs that support this initiative by building community health and wellbeing across neighborhoods.

Sponsor this Initiative

Join us and our current sponsors to help expand this important work and increase the impact we are able to deliver across communities.

The Foundation for Art & Healing