Stories of Kindness from Around the World

Giving support

A friend of mine called me at 2 am. I am an owl and usually work through the night, so I was awake. She was going through some problems and wanted to talk to me about them. I am overloaded with work right now, under a lot of pressure and incredibly stressed out. I too have a lot on my mind apart from just my work. But I decided to stop what I was doing, put it all on hold and talk her through her problems. I think it did the trick because we managed to find some kind of clarity to the situation after the conversation. I hope she feels better. However I know that sometimes it is not really what you talk about or whether you have found a clear solution to the problem that matters. What really matters is knowing that when you are going through a tough time, you ... Read Full Story >>

1630 Reads

Courage and Composure

Remaining calm and level-headed in moments of crisis is a challenge -- particularly when you're only nine years old. But when second-grader Jimmy Steven's mother fell unconscious behind the driving wheel, he knew just what to do.

Jumping onto his mother's lap he steered the car to the side of the road, put it in park and dialed 911. For the next eleven minutes, he calmly directed paramedics to the car where he and his younger siblings were waiting. Jimmy's courage and composure saved his mother's life, and his bravery earned him a medal from the local police and other honors from the town.

Read more at http://www.dfw.com/mld/dfw/news/state/16130243.htm?source=rss&channel=dfw_state

1834 Reads

My Fair Lady

Last week, one of my colleagues gave me two tickets to the musical My Fair Lady  - it was the opening night and she got the tickets from somebody else in the ofice. Seeing that she has a small boy and couldn't go, she offered me the tickets.

I phoned my two daughters and asked  what should I do - try and find a friend to go with me [my husband was out of town and both my daughters are visiting with their babies without their husbands] when my youngest daughter offered to look after her sister's ten-week-old baby so that she could go with me - she said that she thinks her sister deserves an evening out!

I felt so grateful that my youngest daughter would do this for my eldest daughter! She was a bit despondent to leave her baby but we did go  and enjoyed the evening tremendously! Before we close at work for the Christmas season, I will most certaibly give my colleague a nice present!

1514 Reads

Lost Wallet and six-hundred Dollars worth of Kindness

Yesterday, while at a bank machine in a very poor part of town, my husband and I found a wallet.  We opened it up to look for ID and the first thing we saw was a picture of a toddler sitting on Santa's knee.  We knew we had to find this father.  We found his drivers licence and gave him a call.  His wife answered the phone and told us he was out looking for his wallet.  We left our phone number and 10 minutes later he called.  He told us because of the poor area of town his friend told him he could say good-bye to the wallet, he would never see it again.  He was so grateful, he offered us $100 as a reward.  My husband and the gentleman made plans to meet and as my husband was getting ready I gave him one of the smile cards.   My ... Read Full Story >>

4930 Reads

Tiny Quilts

Preemies are so tiny that everything is too big for them. I made 20 tiny quilts that I'm donating to Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

My granddaughter was born there and wasn't able to come home for 11 months. This is a gift from me to the hospital for being willing tools of God's miracles.

1600 Reads
  • Posted by Maggie1949
  • Dec 20, 2006
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"Spare Change" of Kindness

I had a meeting to go to and pulled up to a metered parking spot in a busy commercial area.  I grabbed a handful of change to feed the meter and discovered that I had an hour and eight minutes on my meter.  So with a smile on my face, I proceeded to walk down the street towards the building where I had my meeting.  Every other parking spot was occupied because of the holiday bustle, and the first meter I passed had expired, though a car was still sitting there. I instantly realized that it would be such a downer for a holiday shopper to get get a ticket in the midst of shopping for loved ones, so I paid forward my meter blessing by dropping a few coins into that meter.  Walking further, I found another car with an expired meter and drop some coins there as well.  ... Read Full Story >>

2240 Reads

Wired to be Inspired

Most theories in social sciences say that people's actions and feelings are motivated by self-interest. So here's a puzzle: why do we care when a stranger does a good deed for another stranger?

Psychologist Jonathan Haidt has been pondering this question for years. Haidt uses the phrase "elevation" to describe the warm, uplifting feeling that people experience when they see unexpected acts of human goodness, kindness or courage -- and the power of this feeling to inspire widespread compassion.

Examples of elevation exist across cultures and historical eras. While psychology has traditionally focused its energy on studying the origin and impact of negative moral emotions such as guilt and anger, Haidt's work seeks to look scientifically at the compelling effects of goodness.

Read more at http://peacecenter.berkeley.edu/greatergood/archive/2005springsummer/SpringSummer05_Haidt.pdf

1604 Reads

Out of Cards :)

I was at a gathering and smile cards came up in conversation.  My friends thought it was a great idea and "bum-rushed" me for my cards.  I gave every single one of them away!  
At first I thought that I had done a disservice because they didn't go out with a good dead.  But then I thought what a great dead indeed.  I had circulated about 6 smile cards in 2 seconds.  I hope they join the cause.  Merry Christmas everyone.

1193 Reads

smile cards and karma

I have found a happiness so special  in giving out  smile cards.  My friends are glad to receive and give back in return - very fulfiling.  Each time I pass along a card to them, they have loved it.  I even have had a friend ask me if she could have a smile card. Smiling with happines, I gave her a card. I only have one card left.  Now that I know what karma points are, I am going to order more!!  SPREAD THE SMILES!!
 

1155 Reads

In need of change

I was standing in the checkout line at the grocery store when the lady in front of me was short of money, so she started to put some things back. I told her I would pay the difference, because I keep spare change in a separate pocket of my coat for times like these.

1265 Reads

The Hug Game

Just this pass week I was finding it kind of hard to pass smile cards around school - with finals coming I found myslef stuck inside studying. So one day when I was sick of studying, I stopped and saw that one of my freinds looked like she needed a hug.

I went up to her and gave her a big hug. Just then, something clicked in my mind. If my friend needed a hug, then somebody else might need a hug too. So I thought of my smile cards. While giving her a hug,  I said these words:
"Tag - you've just been hugged. When you see somebody that needs a hug, give them one and say what I just said."

1866 Reads

"Mahalo Nui Loa"

I just finished my Human Services practicum and as much as I loved the class and the instructor, I was dissapointed with my classmates. It was a small class - just 12 of us - and the other students took advantage of the instructor's kindness with late work, excuses for not completing assignments, etc.  During the last 3 weeks of class, she was expressing her dissatisfaction and how she was going to have to re-think how she taught the class next semester. I really felt bad for her as she is a great inspiration to me and I could relate to her pain. In Chicken Soup for the Soul, there is a story about two guys walking down the beach covered with starfish. One guy is throwing the starfish back into the ocean as they walk. The other guy says "There are thousands of them you can't possibly make a difference."  At that ... Read Full Story >>

4626 Reads

Soup for the Soul

Today I remembered to mail some money to a soup kitchen in NY that always struggles this time of year feeding the homeless.  I'm strapped for cash this year (like all of us) but on our first real day of cold, I was reminded just how awful it must be to be cold and on the street.

1453 Reads

Not An Ordinary World Cup

The soccer ball sounds like the clatter of a rattlesnake's tail, fans are barred from cheering too loudly and the sidelines are clear plastic walls meant to keep the players in-bounds -- clearly not an ordinary World Cup. Save for the goalkeepers, all of the athletes are legally blind.

Welcome to the fourth World Championships of Soccer for the Blind. Spectator Marcelo Gonzalez, who coaches blind teenagers and 20-somethings in Argentina, said he still marvels how sightless players are so attuned to sounds, vibrations and the fast-changing position of their competitors.

Read more at http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2006/11/24/america/LA_GEN_Argentina_Blind_World_Cup.php

2720 Reads

Home-baked goodness

Somebody baked cookies and put some in my mailbox.  That was so nice.  When I found them, it made my day. 

There were no cookies in my neighbor's mailox, and he was having a rough day so I gave him some of mine.  Those cookies made both of our days!

1301 Reads

Feast of St. Nicholas

Yesterday was the Feast of St. Nicholas. My daughters and I went to the family night for religious ed at church. I knew it would be fun, but didn't realize just how much I would be filled with by the spirit of St. Nicholas. He lived around 300 A.D. This saint was one of the most giving souls we know of. It's what he's famous for, his acts of kindness. He would be a regular on this website! Our activity was to make a treat bag, wrapped in a piece of rugged brown corduroy cloth, filled with fruit, nuts and candy, and then later to choose someone to give it to. I was really looking forward to that! After the activities, we had a prayer service in which "St. Nicholas" made an appearance. The children took off their shoes and left them in the basement. When we went back down, there ... Read Full Story >>

1464 Reads

Wishes for Loved Ones!

Its easy to forget those old faces from work or friends from home. Today was a day that I sent out emails, belated birthday wishes, and hellos to old friends and coworkers from back home!

1350 Reads

A Cup of Coffee

It is 8:00 am at the Indian Coffee House. Breakfast time. We have taken a table in the “Ladies and Families” room, and are sipping fresh lime juice while we wait for our food. Shortly after we sit down, a woman takes the table next to us and orders a coffee. Though the clientele of the Coffee House is as class-diverse as just about any eating establishment I can think of in India, the woman is more shabbily dressed and unkept than anyone I have every seen there. She is barefoot, and her hair is just beginning to regrow after a recent shaving. Her demeanor is introspective and slightly sad. The waiter brings her an extra-full cup, setting it gently before her as if to say that he wishes he could do more to alleviate her sorrows. In fact, he does plenty. The coffee brings a contentment to her face. She ... Read Full Story >>

2174 Reads

Parking spot

The wife had an appointment after work and as she doesn't like to drive she asked me when I picked her up from work if I could take her.

She said she'd take about an hour and she'd understand if I didn't want to wait and I said sure I'll drive. Our downtown, small as it is, can get crowded at times especially this time of the year.

 While sitting in a parking spot reading my book, I had noticed this one car had made two trips past me looking for parking. I thought how lucky I was to have a spot and then a few minutes later I see this same car at the corner scanning for a spot. Knowing I could just drive around as the wife should be back soon, I put the Echo in reverse and the look of relief on the lady's face was priceless.

People are pretty polite driving-wise here in Hawaii anyways but along with the shaka she flashed the smile she gave me made my day. It only took a few trips round the block before the wife showed up and I thought about how easy it is to be polite and thoughtful. What if everyone cared?  Imagine!

3375 Reads

Helping a mother in need

My sister-in-law has a friend who came to visit with an 8-month old baby.  I've offered her a lot of baby things to use while she is on her visit (stroller, saucer, toys, videos, carseat).  Having been there I know how hard it is to travel, especially with all the baby gear!  I am just glad I have held on to some of my baby things so someone else could get some use out of them. 

The other mom has been so grateful of everything I've let her use and that is what makes me happy.

1418 Reads