Massachusetts, USA


To Lawrence Community Connections and Merrimack College’s Community Engagement Program, Before I Die is not just a chalkboard wall, but a civic engagement initiative. Studies have demonstrated that low-income communities like Lawrence can develop low levels of social trust due to the competitive dynamics created by the scarcity of resources. The capacity to empathize may well be the basis on which trust depends.

In an attempt to emphasize the democratic ideals of equality, social justice and concern for others, we decided to install a bilingual Before I Die wall at the heart of downtown Lawrence. In addition, we will be launching a series of community dialogues called Chalk Talks. Basing our conversations on the recoccuring themes written our Before I Die wall, we will be critically analyzing statements, and we aim to increase the wellbeing of our community through the fosterng of social reciprocity and cooperation.

This wall will be remain up until November on 18 Broadway. You can also check us out at:


I want to see my two boys.

I want to restore faith in humanity.

I want to take care of my mom the way she took care of me.

I want to my mom to <3 me.

I want to salir me de la droga.

I want to stop bullying.

I want to ver mis 4 hijos crecer.

Built by Lawrence Community Connections & Merrimack College Community Engagement students

September 2013