On November 4th my city will hold its second Random Act of Kindness Day. In case any of you don’t know what that is, it’s a day that encourages each of us to do something kind for another person and it’s an opportunity to appreciate our fellow citizens and build our community.
Random Act of Kindness is NOT about fundraising or giving money – just a day to celebrate simple acts of kindness like buying someone a coffee, congratulating someone on a job well done, driving someone to an appointment, holding a door open, carrying someone’s groceries, etc. In the weeks leading up to Random Act of Kindness Day, citizens are invited to hand out printed cards that say “You’ve been touched by a RANDOM ACT OF KINDNESS.” Card holders are encouraged to hand over the card to someone else and perform a simple kind act for that person.
In 2010, 60 organisations officially participated and 25,000 RAK cards were distributed. There were thousands of confirmed ‘kindness sightings’.
Below are 101 simple Random Acts of Kindness suggestions for family, friends, co-workers, classmates…..
Send a letter, a card, or make a telephone call to a long-lost friend or relative and renew that relationship.
Invite someone to dinner who is alone or on their own.
Visit a shut-in, elderly friend, or someone who is sick.
Offer a ride to someone to appointment, shopping etc.
Send a thank you/congratulatory note to a co-worker/classmate, appreciating their efforts and the difference they make.
Assist a co-worker or classmate with a project.
Dedicate a song to a special someone on the radio.
Prepare a favourite meal/snack for family or friend.
Share your professional expertise with someone in need of that help.
Offer your services of childcare to allow a new mother some personal time.
Take the garbage out for your neighbour.
Let someone into line with fewer items than you at the store.
Help rake your neighbour’s leaves.
Assist with household activities.
Smile, talk, or “hang out” with a co-worker/classmate with whom you may not usually do so.
Wash and vacuum someone’s car.
Store furniture for someone.
Help someone move.
Loan your bicycle/car/tools to someone.
Share your discount coupons.
Let your staff go home a few minutes early.
Write a poem/song/paint a picture for someone.
Teach someone a new skill.
Call or email a long-lost friend or relative and get reconnected.
Open and hold a door for someone.
Help someone obviously struggling with a heavy load.
Carry groceries to the car and return the cart for a parent with a child, or a senior etc.
Volunteer your time and skills.
Come to work early and make coffee for your co-workers.
Offer your parking space to someone; give your “pay and display” with time left on it to someone.
Gather up your gently used clothes, toys, furniture, and books and donate them to appropriate organization.
Safely assist someone in need of roadside help.
Congratulate/comfort a team-mate.
Let someone into the line of traffic.
Leave a thank you note for the paperboy/postal worker.
Reward a loyal customer.
Thank/appreciate a business owner/staff person who has provided you with excellent service.
Educate others about Random Act of Kindness Day and discuss the importance of “everyday kindness.
Tidy up the staff kitchen at your office.
Pick up litter and be kind to our environment.
Pick up clothing that may have fallen off a hanger in a store.
Compliment someone on their hair/clothing /job well done.
Give gently used toys and clothing to a shelter.
Make your family’s favourite dinner.
Car pool with someone for the day.
Ride your bike to work /school to save carbon emissions and be kind to the environment.
Allow a student to job shadow you.
Help someone with their resume.
Refer a job opening to someone looking for a position.
Share magazines that you get a subscription to when you are finished with them.
Share a favourite recipe with a friend or co-worker.
Donate your time at the food bank or soup kitchen.
Take your kids to the park.
Let your kids stay up an hour later than normal if it is not a school day the next day.
Teach your kids how to make cookies.
Take your pet for an extra long walk.
If you see someone with their tail light or brake lights out, let them know.
If you see someone who has locked themselves out of their car, offer to make a phone call for them.
Share your garden produce with friends/neighbours.
Comfort someone who is in need.
Hug someone you love and tell them you love them.
Give up your seat on the bus for some who needs to sit.
Pick up litter off the street/parks.
Donate a canned item to the food bank from your cupboard that you bought but are not going to use.
Share your notes with someone who has missed a class or meeting.
Put a treat in your spouse/kids lunch box.
Work or switch a work shift so someone else who needs the time off can do so.
Let a group or organization use your boardroom for a meeting.
Send leftover catered food to a homeless shelter.
Help with housework for a senior or make their lunch for them.
Refer someone to a website that offers valid coupons.
Pick up roadside bottles and put them in a recycling bin.
Be part of your Neighbourhood Watch Program.
Pump gas for someone at a self-serve.
Pick flowers from your garden and share them at work or with neighbour/friends.
Get a group together to entertain at a senior’s residence.
Offer to cover the receptionist over the lunch hour so she can have an extra long lunch.
Clean off graffiti in your neighbourhood.
Have your business offer a Random Act of Kindness Day discount to encourage kindness.
Let people cross at the cross walks when you see them waiting.
Offer to fix or repair items for someone who doesn’t have the skill set to do it themselves.
Help deliver meals to people.
Form a neighbourhood committee to do a neighbour cleanup.
Organize a neighbourhood garage sale.
Remember birthdays, anniversaries, and special dates and send the person(s) a note or card.
Give a friendly welcome to newcomers in your neighbourhood, at work, or at school.
Write a reference letter or post one on LinkedIn for someone who is not expecting it.
Say something nice to everyone you meet.
Tutor a student who is struggling with a subject in which you have skill.
Offer to share your umbrella on a rainy day.
Tell your staff/employees how important they are to your business.
Give your family or friends a kindness certificate that they can redeem for a favour later.
Donate or give your season’s theatre/hockey tickets to someone when you aren’t going to use them.
Share/email your photos from events with others who attended but didn’t get any pictures.
Send a letter of thanks to someone who has made a difference in your life.
Organize a pot luck at your work.
Thank the crossing guard for taking good care of the children going to school each day.
Thank a police officer/fireman and stop to consider what would happen to our community without them.
Call your paper provider and arrange to have your paper donated when you’re away on holidays.
Fold and/or put laundry away for your spouse/child/roommate.
Whether your community is holding their own Random Act of Kindness Day or not I think we should all take the time to perform Acts of Kindness everyday. I actually see several things on the list above that I should start doing regularly, but it’s probably a good idea to have a day like this just to remind us all to be kind. So on November 4th pick something from the list above or come up with your own creative “Random Act of Kindness” and show those around you we are a kind and caring society.
- Changing the world by opening one door at a time (dangoldesq.wordpress.com)
- Experiments in Kindness (dinaschiaffo.wordpress.com)