We are storytellers of the human journey, discovering that the well of life’s inspiration springs from the lives of people making a positive impact on the world.

  • Well Founded—

    John and Pat O’Brien, married for over 30 years, share a deep faith and strong commitment to social justice. They understand the power of story to inspire the best in the human spirit and promote good work in the world. Their creativity and generosity produced The Telling Well.

    Mike Leonard is an Emmy-winning 32 year NBC-TV features correspondent and filmmaker.
    inCommon  on WTTW-TV/Chicago & select public TV stations nationally. All episodes here on The Telling Well.

    Mary Kay Wall is Director of The Telling Well, and Executive Producer of Leonard Films.

  • The Telling Well—

    It’s a place to sustain and celebrate life. Connect in our shared human story. Bond in our hopes and dreams. And laugh. A lot.

    Compelling stories starring common people – of uncommon character

    Intriguing people — a filmmaker in Africa, an Arab Frisbee player, a world-famous musician, an obscure coach, a pro athlete, and the guy next door.

    The Well overflows with vital content.  Keeps us buoyant in the possibility of life.

    That’s worth streaming.

    Tell others.

The storytellers

Explore Our Global Inspiration

Explore the map to see previews of our stories.

Molly Bourke's journey

Misericordia is a Chicago home and school for individuals with developmental and/or physical disabilities. Through its inclusive environment of dignity, challenge and spirituality, it gently nudges clients to achieve their (oftentimes miraculous) independence.

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Headquartered IN: Chicago | 41.8369° N, 87.6847° W

Peace in the air

Playing Ultimate Frisbee, two American athletes get inspired to translate teamwork into a peace effort between Jewish and Arab children. At their aptly-named Ultimate Peace camp in Israel, children grasp their commonality through the simple joy of sport.

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Headquartered IN: Israel | 31.0000° N, 35.0000° E

Right to education

While many of their classmates pursue huge financial rewards for their big-tuition college educations, ACE volunteers discover that providing a solid school experience to inner city kids carries its own reward. One incomparable and beyond any price.

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Headquartered IN: South Bend | 41.6725° N, 86.2553° W

Second chances

Cara gives second chances to people ready to turn their lives around. Through job training, psychological coaching, motivational support and skill development, Cara has helped thousands of people launch into new lives. Meet Andrea and Sasheen, two amazing women who joined Cara and summoned all they had within.

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Headquartered IN: Chicago | 41.8369° N, 87.6847° W

An open heart is sacred

A Tanzanian priest serving in Chicago, Fr. Kiiguta enlightens a mostly non-Catholic student body at St. John de la Salle. Watch him light up as he travels back home for the very first graduation at the Sacred Heart Secondary School he founded for poor children.

Coming Soon

Headquartered IN: Tanzania | 6.3070° S, 34.8540° E

  • Our Stories

    Explore our global inspiration.

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  • inCommon

    A show about life: the unseen episodes.

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