Stories of Kindness from Around the World

All You Need is Little Bit of Love

With the recent floods in Gujarat, India, I've been busy with flood relief work in the affected slums.  We distribute medicines, food, clothing, etc. but what is the most important thing to give is love. There are countless stories of how love makes a difference.  One important part of our work is going out, cutting fingernails, combing hair and playing with kids.  There is no particular incidence that strikes me but rather the power of simply giving love.  The magnetic force that drew kids to the volunteers was love, pure and simple.  As we talked to the kids, they seemed to blossom, basking in the attention that each was receiving. At one point, a bunch of kids had gathered around me, while I was watching over some pots of food, while others were going house to house for distribution.  Soon I was teaching head and shoulders, knees and toes and Simon says.  ... Read Full Story >>

4000 Reads

Gamblers Anonymous

Hi, my name is John. I am a recovering compulsive gambler. I was free from a bet for 10 years from 1986 till 1996 and I can honestly say those were the 10 best years of my life.I had a beautiful wife that i learned to love more then my gambling. I had a great house, great job, and 2 nice cars in the driveway. I was doing everything that Gamblers Anonymous was teaching me, how to stay free from a bet one day at a time. It was suggested for me to get a sponser and go to a lot of meetings and read the steps of recovery and do them. Ask for a higher power to be put in your life. So I ask God to be my higher power. Because i was the higher power for a long time and i was not doing anything right in ... Read Full Story >>

28.2K Reads

Encouraging a Pirate

My wife and I were at Disneyland taking the shuttle back to the hotel, when this boy -- I guess he must've been 4 or 5 years old -- gets on the shuttle bus with his pirate sword and eye patch.

He was looking real tough in his gear so I decided to yell out to every one on the bus, "Stand back! There is a pirate on the bus."

As fast as the words came out of my mouth the boy pulls off his eye patch, drops his swords, and yells back, "No, no, no. It's just me. I am a little kid, not a real pirate." Everyone on the bus had a great laugh.

The next day his mother saw me in the hotel lobby and stopped me to thank me. She told me that I had made her son's day and that he talked about scaring the big guy on the bus all that night.

P.S. I am 6'3" 280 lbs.

3909 Reads

Nervous Girlscout

I was out of town at a relatives house for a party- when I heard the doorbell ring. I volunteered to help answer the door, since everyone was so busy. A nervous little girlscout came with her older brother.  I decided this felt like a moment to do something nice. 

I encouraged the shy little one to talk about her products, and cheered her on when she recommended items. At first I thought, it's probably not a big deal to be encouraging- and went ahead to order the "Smores" and other items that would be left as a surprise anonymously for the relative that I was staying with.

I shared my experiences as a young, nervous girlscout too. And then applauded the kids for doing their work- going door to door. I thought they were bound to get a lot of orders, and congratulated them on working so hard. 

Then to my surprise, the older brother piped in- we've been trying to sell for hours and barely anyone was buying!  I had no idea such a little act of encouragement would matter.  I may never see these little kids again since this wasn't my neighborhood- but I really felt good for what happened in our exchange. 

2023 Reads

Keeping On With Smile Cards

I am part of a club called Random Acts of Kindness (R.A.K). Our group ordered a lot of smile cards throughout last school year and they worked wonders. Myself and the other club officers plan on ordering more cards for this year and just continue to pay it forward.

2771 Reads
  • Posted by Kristien Lewis
  • Sep 3, 2006
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10th Birthday, Car Washes, and $62.82

It was Neil's 10th birthday party. After a dozen close friends super-soaked each other with water and stuffed themselves with food and cake, this sunny August morning party would be about a different kind of fun -- fun of giving. Today, we decided to "tag" people with free car washes. First up were the signs. Taking all the art supplies and glitter and fancy colored pens, the kids sprawled all over the ground to create couple of large "Free Car Wash" signs; no matter how hard they tried to color inside the lines, these signs had "we are kids" written all over it. Soon enough, we gathered up the sponges, towels and soap and headed to the driveway. "Free Car Wash," we practiced our cheer on practically every car that drove by. To get our act together, though, we rolled in one of our own cars on the driveway. ... Read Full Story >>

35.7K Reads

A Fond Legacy of Wise Woman

I am looking forward to using my smile cards. Many years ago a beautiful lady took my son and I under her wing. She was so loving and caring, and one day I said to her "how can I ever repay you". she looked at me in her wise way, just smiled and said "do something for someone else".

What a wonderful legacy she left us. I try to pay it forward wherever I can, in fond memory of her.

2591 Reads

Making 12th Graders Smile

I just started 12th grade this year. Being stuck in school since I was 3 years old in preschool I know how hard it is on the teachers and the young people they teach.

I go to a high-school now and in my bag I always have pack of smile cards. A few years ago I was the one who gave the first smile card at my school and now it's going on strong.

So back to story. I was the one that hated talking to or going up to people that I don't know. Well lets say that I have changed that. Every person that I saw on the fist day of school, I would say something nice to them or help them out and give them a smile card. Now I have cupple of cards.

Now when I need help not only do I get it but sometimes I get a smile card too. And now at school I am known as the Smile 12th grader. When you need it the most I will be there. It's like I just know when somebody needs me.

1771 Reads

Answering Prayers

I was on my way to get some books for school, when I saw two old men sitting and talking in the sun near the bus stand. What struck me about them was not their stance, but rather their attire. Both were wearing old and torn clothes, one was barefoot and the other had on broken sandals. As of late, I’ve been keeping my eyes and heart open for opportunities to serve. Stocked with some extra clothing, it’s my job to find these items an appropriate new home. The men were engrossed in their conversation and did not pay heed to me as I inched closer to hear their words. “In these winter months, we’re lucky that the sun shines so brightly in the day and offers some heat in the cold, but what are we going to do at night? My blanket is thin and torn and offers no protection from ... Read Full Story >>

3648 Reads

Thirst Quencher On Busy Day

I was leaving my office late Saturday morning...a little bit grumpy because I had to get up early and go to work on the weekend, and was now running late for the next of my zillion obligations for the weekend...and the worst part was I had no time to eat a proper lunch. I was complaining about all of this to my husband on my cell phone, while I turned around from locking the door behind me, and then I spotted him. A man lying in the grass asleep. I said to my husband, "I'm sorry I've just been complaining. Thanks for listening. I have to go." I went back into my office, found a box, and went to my desk. I took every bag of snacks and protein bars I could and placed them in the box. Then I went to my mini fridge and put in two kinds of ... Read Full Story >>

4525 Reads

An Interview With Sharon Salzberg

What does kindness mean to you? I think the associations people have with kindness are often things like meekness and sweetness and maybe sickly sweetness; whereas I do think of kindness as a force, as a power. When I look back over the instances, the encounters of my life, even when I just look around at the world, there's something that moves me so strongly that really is inspiring and uplifting about people just taking the time to pay attention to somebody or going a little bit out of their way to seek to help them. I can almost feel the palpable force of that. It reminds us of our own inner strength and our capacity to give, and it also reminds us of how connected we all are. In what way can kindness be a spiritual practice? It's both an internal spiritual practice and it's an external practice. I think one doesn't ... Read Full Story >>

3122 Reads

A Little Time On The Elevator

I was at a business meeting, and I had to run downstairs to pick up some documents. As I was hurrying to catch the elevator back upstairs to my meeting, an elderly woman stopped me and asked me to go on the elevator downstairs with her.

She explained that she was terrified of elevators and asked/begged if I could go with her downstairs to the street level. At first, I was going to ask her why she was afraid, and the doors were opening. I canned my question, just got on the elevator and went downstairs with her, and pointed which direction she should go. I got back in the elevator and went upstairs. My colleagues were a bit inconvenienced, but our meeting proceeded without a hitch.

Sometimes it takes a little time to be kind, sometimes you have to give up your priority to help someone make it to the street.

3423 Reads

Helping Our Abandoned Animal Friends

My nieghbour abandoned his home over one month ago and left 3 beautiful cats locked in his hame to starve. I knew he had left for good, and had left his animals behind as I saw the cats in the window. I called every agency but in this small town there are very few, the only thing we have is a dog catcher, and he wouldn't come as it was a private home, he said he could do nothing about it. I could not accept that, so I went and opened the window wide enough for the cats to get out. My daughter and I fed them everyday, we posted posters all over town in the hope of finding them a home. I also bought ad time on a local radio station and sent out ads looking for people to adopt them. Because they were older, no one wanted them, ... Read Full Story >>

1846 Reads

Holiday Kindness

I was on a holiday in Santorini, walking through a quite, traditional village when an old, Greek lady asked me if I could help her. I said yes, and followed her into her house. She pulled out a ladder and in broken English and lots of gesturing I was asked to hang up her net curtain. So there I am in my short hoilday skirt, up a ladder, hanging up her net curtain. After doing so I was offered a shot of Ouzo, which I kindly accepted and ran back to the coach which, luckily hadn't departed yet!!

1418 Reads

Five Dollars and a Lot of Love

After several months of having only one income suporting our household, we had been struggling to make ends meet. One day, I took all the cash I had for the next week ($60) and went to buy groceries, as the fridge and cabinets were empty. I kept a running tab in my head of everything I was buying, even rounding up to the nearest dollar to make sure I didn't go over what I could afford. Once the food and basic items we needed approached $60, I went to checkout and somehow the total came to $65. On the off chance that I had room on a credit card, I tried using two of them...both declined. Getting very embarrassed, I asked the clerk what I could deduct that was about $5. Everything in my cart was important and it scared me that money was so tight. I didn't know how to decide. ... Read Full Story >>

6187 Reads
  • Posted by Wes Bennett
  • Aug 23, 2006
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A Cup of Chai At 3AM

The third round of flooding came at night. Residents kept vigil all night, waiting and watching the water level rise. Would it enter their home? As the water rose, people moved to the street, but still they wouldn't sleep. The water level continued it climb upwards, displacing more people as the hours passed. The stores were closed and traffic on the street minimal, but activity was in the air as people moved to help their relatives and neighbours.

A distance away, a man heard the news. He jumped on his scooter and instead of heading to the flooded slum, he drove in the opposite direction to Lal Darwaja (7-8km away from the slum), where food stands were open.

Dus chai dedo (10 chais please).

Packing the chai for travel, he then jumped back on his scooter and headed to the tekra. When he found the family he was looking for, he handed out chai to them and those around them before even asking how they were. They simply looked at the man and smiled. At 3AM, a cup of chai was exactly what they needed.

4036 Reads

A Helping Hand...and Heart

I serve on the committee at church that provides meals when a family or individual is going through grief, or
caring for someone sick, or whatever the circumstance. I had the opportunity to prepare a meal for a man whose wife was in the hospital recovering from surgery. I made the meal and delivered it to the church where he could stop by on his way home from work and pick it up and have a hot home cooked meal before visiting his wife at the hospital. This was completely anonymous as all the man knew was that a meal would be ready for him at the church to pick up.

It gave me such comfort knowing I could help someone who was going through a difficult time, or just to make things a little easier for someone else.

1552 Reads

Moments of Kindness

I ordered one batch of cards over a year ago. Sometimes I just buy lunch for the person behind me at McDonalds (which gets really strange looks from the McDonalds worker taking my money. Because they don't know why somebody would WANT to do that)

And sometimes I pay for prescriptions for older people at the pharmacy I go to ... one's who can't afford even their copay. Thanks for doing this. It's a WONDERFUL THING! God bless.

1300 Reads
  • Posted by Heather Berry
  • Aug 20, 2006
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Two Cable Guys

This morning as I was returning home from taking my daughter to school, I noticed two cable trucks parked on a neighborhood street and two men were working so hard on a electrical box, sweating profusely (it's 100 degrees even at 8:40 in the morning). I was only a block away from home, so I stopped in and grabbed some cold water bottles and drove it over to them.

It is amazing how little deeds can really make a difference. These men at first looked at me as if I wanted something in return (funny how our society is conditioned to expect this)but after I handed them the bottles and told them to be sure to stay hydrated, they smiled so big and thanked me and said, "You are so kind, thank you so much, have a great day!"

It is not often that you receive comments like this every day. All it takes is small random acts of kindness and what you get in return makes you feel so good. A lot better than grumbling and rushing around all the time!

1318 Reads

Bearing Smiles

Recently I went to a restaurant with my grandparents. I decided that it was time to use a card. We ate our dinner and got ready to leave, but before I left, I layed a smile card on the table along with a tiny bear figurine that I had made. Then, I hurried towards the door.

Before I got there, the waitress saw what was at the table and called out to me that I had forgot something. I told her no, it was hers! She smiled, and that was the last time I saw her. It was really exciting, and a new way to spead smiles! Plus, one of my bears now has a home, and is "bearing smiles!"

1953 Reads