Join "Dear Stranger"

Dear Stranger is a letter-exchange project that connects Nebraskans through the mail to share experiences, beliefs, and ideas, modeled after a program by the same name at Oregon Humanities.

Dear Stranger encourages people to reflect on their experiences and beliefs and make new connections by writing letters to strangers: write a letter, get a letter, and make a new connection. “Dear Stranger” is designed to allow anyone, of any age, to participate, and to do so anonymously should they choose. We also ask participants to complete the 2022 Dear Stranger Participation Form, indicating their understanding that Humanities Nebraska is not responsible for the content of letters and that, if they are age 18 or younger, they have a parent or guardian’s permission to participate.

The next deadline is February 15, 2023.  

Prompt for Winter 2023

If you find it helpful, feel free to use this optional prompt as you compose your letter. The theme this year ties into the celebration of our 50th anniversary.  The following prompt is offered:

Write about a local or national public event from the last 50 years – a celebration, anniversary, or gathering that occurred between 1972 and 2022 – that was personally meaningful to you. Share how that experience felt, why you hold onto it, and how it affected you.


If you have questions about Dear Stranger, please send email.

We want to know what you think about “Dear Stranger”.

How did it feel to write your letter, and to receive a letter in response? Did you learn anything about yourself while writing your letter? There are many ways to let us know:

  • Send us an email.
  • Post a photo of you and your letter on Instagram and tag it @HumanitiesNE and #NEDearStranger
  • You can also post the photo on Facebook ( or Twitter (@HumanitiesNE)

"Dear Stranger" is sponsored in part by an Anonymous Donor and:

Sponsorship Opportunities

While this is a relatively inexpensive program for HN to run, there are costs related to postage, promotional materials and staff time. HN seeks individuals and organizations to become sponsors ranging from $250 to $1,000.  Benefits of sponsorship include visibility in promotional materials (ie. press releases, eblasts), recognition on the HN website, and in our statewide outreach to media outlets, libraries, and literary organizations and other organizations. Sponsors may also remain anonymous if they choose. For sponsorship questions, please email Heather Thomas.

Sample Letters from August 2020