National Human Services Assembly

National Reframing Human Services Initiative

Building Well-Being So Everyone Can Reach Their Full Potential

The National Reframing Human Services Initiative seeks to build broader and deeper public support for human services so that everyone has the opportunity to reach their full potential. The frame and recommendations are an evidence-based communication strategy for building public understanding of our sector and the will to support the important work taking place in the diverse communities human service organizations serve.

An Introduction to Reframing

Human services play a vital role in ensuring that everyone has the opportunity to reach their full potential and contribute to their communities. Yet the rich value, broad scope, and vast societal benefits of human services are simply not resonating with the public. As a result, the human service sector has struggled to marshal the resources and public engagement necessary to address the complex issues facing their communities. Since 2012, the National Human Services Assembly’s National Reframing Initiative has worked to change the conversation on human needs in order to make human services a national priority.

The National Reframing Initiative builds broader and more robust civic support for human services to improve well-being for all people across their lifespan. To help create an effective and evidence-based strategy, the National Assembly engaged the FrameWorks Institute to conduct a multiyear study on how best to build the public’s will to support the sector’s important work. Based on the findings, FrameWorks identified an overarching story, the Building Well-Being Narrative, that is proven to significantly increase the public’s knowledge of what human services are and why they are critical for a vibrant society.

To accelerate the widespread adoption of this new approach into human service communications, the National Reframing Initiative advances comprehensive mobilization and implementation strategies at the local, state, and national level, including:

  • Developing publicly available tools and resources to help organizations, associations, and networks integrate the Building Well-Being Narrative into their communications;
  • Providing targeted newsletters and implementation guidance to help organizations adopt the reframed narrative into their communication strategies; and
  • Creating and disseminating reframed messages to provide policymakers, the media, and the public with a more accurate understanding of the vital role of the human service sector.


This initiative has been generously funded by The Kresge Foundation and Annie E. Casey Foundation.


Learn about the important research supporting the National Reframing Initiative and the various implementation phases since its inception in 2012.

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Using the Frame

Overview: Explore steps for integrating the Building Well-Being Narrative into your communications, as well as some helpful tips, tricks, and samples for implementation are outlined here.

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Reframing Resource Library

Find tools, presentations, publications, implementation guides, news items, and more, all relating to the National Reframing Initiative.

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Get Involved

Find ways to engage with and implement that National Reframing Initiative at your organization.

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Become a Member

Are you interested in joining our network of nonprofit human service organizations to be a part of the collective voice of the sector? Find out more about membership with the National Assembly and all of the benefits that come with.

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