“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed it’s the only thing that ever has.”

– Margaret Mead, American Anthropologist



How to Make the World a Better Place” is an ongoing program (2017-2018), spearheaded by the good folks at Heritage Presbyterian Church, of presentations and learning opportunities for people of all ages in the Benicia community.

NOTE: The Benicia Public Library has links to books and films in their collection as it relates to each of these events on their website.


Monthly presentations at Heritage Pres., (1400 E. 2nd St., Benicia), on specific world problems and how we can help to make them better:

  • Wed. Feb.28, 7 p.m. – WHO GETS TO BE AN AMERICAN? Refugees and Immigrants past, present and future in our country. Speakers: Jude Stephens from Catholic Charities Refugee Resettlement of the East Bay, and Nicole Germanov, Refugee Transitions, Oakland. Event Flyer:HPC.Better World. Who gets to be an American?f
  • Wed. March 21, 7 p.m. – WHY CAN’T WE JUST GET ALONG? A frank discussion of privilege, prejudice and bullying and how these vexing problems can be minimized or even eliminated. Our speaker will be the Rev. Peter Champion, Interim Pastor at St. Paul’s Episcopalian Church here in Benicia, among other things, a trainer on changing racists thoughts and actions.
  • Wed. April 25, 7 p.m. – PEACE (Personal, Inter-personal, Community, Nation, World) Speaker Sandhya Jha, Director, Oakland Peace Center
  • Wed. May 30, 7 p.m. – HOMELESSNESS AND AFFORDABLE HOUSING: Is there solutions to the problem of a growing homeless population and the limited stock of affordable housing in the expensive Bay Area housing market?


  • Jan. – GETTING HEARD BY DECISION MAKERS: Learning how to get your concerns addressed and “speak truth to power,” make positive relations with powerful people, and protest with grace and style.  Benicia Mayor Elizabeth Patterson and Erin Shipp, Solano County Chair INDIVISIBLE, a national group that advises people on getting heard by political decision makers.
  • Nov. – CLIMATE CRISIS discussion featuring climate scientist Dr. Andrew Gunther
  • Oct. – SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE IN AN UNCERTAIN FUTURE featuring UC Davis Dept. of Agriculture and Environmental Science professors Gail Feenstra and David Campbell
  • Sept. – LOCAL HUNGER ISSUES featured Larry Sly, Director of the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano counties, and Viola Robertson, Director of Benicia Community Action Council


  • ESSAY & POETRY CONTEST (in partnership with Benicia Literary Arts) Creative Benicians wrote how they think the world could be better. A booklet of selected works will be published in March.
  • SEND BEN: A photo events asking Benicians to send a picture of young Ben (for Benicia) near and far, asking friends and family to photograph Ben in interesting places around the world and send the photos back to Benicia by April 16, 2018 for a city-wide display in May, 2018. Details:
  • BETTER WORLD ART DISPLAY: artists’ impressions of ways the world might be better. Dates and location TBA.



Email: betterworldbenicia(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign); Phone church at: (707)745-6650.