Operation Understanding

Operation Vacation was a program of Operation Understanding

Unscripted, Docu-Series | True Story
Status: Concept (Based on a True-Life Faith-Based Interdenominational Model)
Comps: TBD

Logline: TBD

Synopsis: Operation Understanding was founded in the 1960s as an experiment following the riots motivated by racial inequities and prejudice in the state of New Jersey. Sarah B. Oliver (Valerie Miche’El Oliver’s mother) worked as volunteer staff through Queen of Angels Parish in Newark, NJ, and had her children participate in the program. Operation Understanding was created as a hopeful and practical solution to help eliminate racial hatred, ignorance, and divisiveness.

Making friends across the class barrier could be the most important way for poor children to escape poverty as adults, according to a major new study. Researchers examining the Facebook friendships of 72 million people, about 84 percent of U.S. adults ages 25 to 44, found that poor children who grew up with a lot of wealthy friends had significantly higher incomes as adults. These friendships had a more profound effect than “school quality, family structure, job availability, or a community’s racial composition.” In friendships with more affluent peers, poor children can glimpse possibility, find informal mentors, and make connections that could help them throughout life. Soaring inequality, though, is making these interactions less frequent, as families with the means who are increasingly desperate to give their children a competitive advantage avoid areas with significant populations of poor people. .

(New York Times)

Season One documents the journey and outcomes of the experiment on three families: the Olivers, the Cliffords and the Taylors. More to come.