About SPARK!




“SPARK! For Humanity is more than a game. It's a life-changing experience”

—Lia Shepherd

SPARK For Humanity is an interactive card game that facilitates a fun, community-building experience.


The game sparks meaningful connections and conversations, and allows communities to unleash their potential to work together and build trust.


With all the division in the world, Rachel (the Founder), and Lia (her partner), believe that--with exposure to multiple perspectives--our hearts and minds expand, and the world becomes a better place. One conversation at a time.


They know from personal experience (and deeply believe) that when we have an invitation to share stories and listen differently to one another, we gain empathy for one another and have a raised awareness of how our identities impact our experience in the world.


SPARK! For Humanity aims to do just that: to bring both depth and lightness to the "living rooms" of the world, so people can talk about what matters most. The game fosters conversations about our multilayered identities, joys, inspirations, and struggles--in a fun and engaging way.



As you'll notice in the free downloadable PDF, the types of cards vary significantly, and therefore the types of conversations-sparked will vary. Some examples of kindling (red) cards are:

  • _____ brings me joy
  • When things get hard, _____ keeps me motivated
  • The title of my first album will be...
  • I will always fight for...
  • My secret power is...
  • That one time everything changed was like...

The fuel (orange) cards are offered by all igniters (and complete the blank). Here are some examples:

  • a wave crashing over me
  • a campfire
  • a live studio audience
  • simple pleasures
  • the beat of a drum
  • a new puppy

The flame (yellow) cards can be pulled by players at anytime if they don't have any fuel cards that resonate. They range from quotes to images and provide more open-ended space for reflecting.


More on SPARK! For Humanity...



For centuries, our ancestors sat in community by the fire to break-bread, share stories, and solve problems. Fires have played a very significant role in the development of humanity, across all religions and regions. The presence of fire ignites something unique in communities, and that's what this game intends to do as well.


The underlying assumption with the agreements (offered for your consideration) is that having light boundaries, especially when we're slowing down and sharing stories, helps. The SPARK! experience is designed to normalize unfiltered, honest and authentic reflections. We also assume that your thoughts may shift (or your answer may change) in 5 minutes...and that's okay.


The guiding principles of SPARK! For Humanity are:

  • to incorporate customer feedback,
  • to stay open to new possibilities emerging with each version,
  • to celebrate our power-players (& spotlight stories from the field)
  • to bring joy and love to this work
  • to build connections and collaborate with others


We are a work-in-progress. We love hearing from you. SPARK! continues to get better because of our community's feedback, and ideas. Join our Facebook Group here.

About Rachel



“Rachel is a force to be reckoned with. Her determination to bring peace and clarity to her environment, team and the world as a whole is something I deeply admire about her. She's a leader that you'll want to follow for sure.”

—Maru Iabichela, CEO and Founder at MARU Internacional

Rachel is a coach and facilitator. With a Masters from Stanford, and extensive training in leadership, coaching, team development, and facilitation, her work is grounded in theory and practice.


Rachel created SPARK! For Humanity, the game where everyone belongs, because she sees a need for it. SPARK! For Humanity serves to facilitate three things that Rachel cares deeply about: building empathy with others, raising-awareness of how one's’ identity impacts their experience in the world, and slowing down to connect in meaningful ways.


Rachel has gained perspective from her experiences working as a teacher, school leader, leadership coach and facilitator in Oakland. Her relentless optimism and laser-focus on justice and equity have always been what fuel her. In her experience as a coach, Rachel has seen the culture of teams transform with the right structures, systems, and relationships. The insights she gained over the past ten years, and her personal experience being in a same-sex, interracial relationship, created the foundation upon which SPARK! For Humanity was built.


At the end of the day, Rachel stands for love and justice. While she sparked the original “flame” for SPARK! For Humanity, the production of the game has been a collective effort.  The support of family and friends have allowed this project to take form, and she thanks her lucky stars that her partner, Lia, and doggy, Ella, are by her side everyday.


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