Stories of Kindness from Around the World

Daffodils and sweets to brighten someone's day...

Recently, I was thinking about how the porters in our building here in London have been doing a great job servicing the residents. In particular, there is one porter who manages to brighten up my day every time I come and go from our building and puts a smile on everyone's faces who comes by. He's always cheerful and very helpful and seems to be full of life.

I thought it would be nice to thank him for his kindness. So, I decided to put together a small bundle of daffodils and a box of sweets, each with a smile card attached. The plan was to leave it at the front desk anonymously, along with a "Thank You" card.

When I got down there, he was at the desk, so the anonymous game was over. But, I decided maybe that's the way it was meant to be, and I handed him the sweets, the flowers, and the card and thanked him for everything he does on a daily basis. He was definitely taken by surprise and couldn't get over the fact that someone would do this for him. It felt so wonderful to brighten someone else's day, who never fails to brighten mine

2571 Reads

Job Interviews and Car Breakdowns!

I was visiting a friend of mine in the SF Bay Area, and we were driving off to dinner when we saw two people walking on the opposite side of the street, and ostensibly trying to flag down cars. No one was stopping, so we took a u-turn and pulled up beside them. A woman, clearly relieved that someone had pulled over, says, "Our car just broke down, and I'm late for an interview, and it's really near by -- could you guys please drive me there?!"

She seemed sincere and her story sounded legitimate, so we picked her up. As we were driving, she was mentioning how much she needed this job, and how thankful she was that we had picked her up. She also said, "And I just couldn't believe that no one would stop for us. As we were trying unsuccessfully to flag people down, I was telling my friend that they just don't know what they're missing out on -- they would feel so good for having helped someone in need!"

We dropped her off, and it just so happened to that we had just received a bunch of smile cards from you, and so when we gave her one, she was so excited about it and took 15 more!

As your motto says, Kindness really is contagious!

3072 Reads

Favour Factory

I am a student at the University of Dundee. My current project is ‘The Favour Factory’. Which is a service primarily based on the concept of seamless interconnection between ‘philanthropy’ and ‘sharing of time’. The service consists of users ‘registering’ with the Factory, in doing this their availability, unique skills, talents and experiences are exposed to fellow members. Subsequently, required favours are carried out in exchange for ‘credits’. As a result, physical and virtual communities are both targeted and created through the ‘Favour Factory'.

1603 Reads
  • Posted by Lauren Currie
  • Mar 8, 2006
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Web comment:

For a long time now I've wanted to better myself as a person and pull myself out of the depression that has really claimed my life the past 7 years. Thankfully now I am starting to really love life and want to encourage those around me. However, sometimes due to the nature of this disease, I find myself fighting for motivation. When I read about this site and got here, I was completely inspired, I feel that something as little as this cards could help encourage me (and others) to make a true difference!

1717 Reads
  • Posted by Jaimie Mennell
  • Mar 6, 2006
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Web comment:

The elections have just finished in my island, and many relationships have been broken because of it. I plan to use these cards as a way to get families and the community back together. This is time also where many young men and women from my island are off in the military; these cards could help bring the community to help the families of those who are away. Sometimes even though we want to help we just don't know how or need a little push, and that is how i plan to use these cards.

1707 Reads
  • Posted by Avery Hocog
  • Feb 21, 2006
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Overworked Pregnant Waitress

Recently my husband was in the hospital after a heart attack. As I sat alone in the cafe at the hospital, I felt such empathy for the one lone waitress in the large dining room there. This young woman looked very close to giving birth and she was working so hard, my heart went out to her as she waited on table after table, including a group of about 12 or more people. I was inspired to leave a smile card but that felt too insignificant in itself so I went to the hospital gift shop & bought a little stuffed animal for her baby. I planned to just leave it anonymously but she came back in the room just then so I presented the bag to her with a smile card inside & just told her it was something for her baby. The look that came over her face was one of shock and disbelief. It was though she was frozen there for a moment. She smiled and thanked me as I walked out of the room. I've thought about that young woman many times since and hope it has made a small difference in her life.

6330 Reads

Simple Surprise For Sister

I plan to put one in each of my sisters lunches with a special surprise snack and note of love. I will then give them 4 more cards to encouarge them to take part in their own acts of kindness, while I use the remaining cards with random acts when I see a need. I hope encouranging my sisters when they are young will help them and their friends discover a joy of helping others that they will carry on throughout there lives.

4832 Reads

DMV Guy and a Stolen Car

Mondays are usually pretty hectic for me. On one of these typical Mondays, I get ready to go to work thinking about all the things I have to accomplish on that day and walk down to get to my car scolding myself for being late to work, but surprisingly the car was nowhere to be found. I parked right across my apartment the previous night but it wasn’t there that morning. This was at 8.00am in the morning. I made trips to all the towing places, police stations all the time thinking that it was towed by cops. By around 10.00am, I couldn’t find it anywhere and the cops decided that it was actually stolen. After filing a report with the them, I finally get to work thinking how my day was completely messed up. Later in the day I went to pick up a rental car at Enterprise only to realize ... Read Full Story >>

3795 Reads

Drive Through Wonder Gal!

Hi, I love your cards and have been thoroughly enjoying "spreading the smile". I frequent the local Hardees on my way to work to pick up breakfast and had gotten to know the girl at the window. One day I pulled up to the drive through to pick up my order and asked how much the persons order was behind me. I explained what I wanted to do, much to her confusion and then delight:-), and we went from there. Ever since, I have begun doing this the morning after every payday or when I have some/any extra cash in my wallet. Sometimes I buy as many breakfasts as I can down the line. The funniest was a police office whom I bought breakfast for. The cashier said he was in shock!!:-) I apologize for writing on such short notice but I am headed to the Peace Corps in 12 days ... Read Full Story >>

1876 Reads

Anonymous act of kindness

My kids and I bought inexpensive fresh flowers from a store and randomly picked 2 women from the supermarket parking lot to give them to and said "these are just for you... have a great day". The response was touching: The first woman started crying and said she just lost her husband of 50 years a few weeks ago and she was just sitting in her car thinking about him. We cried and hugged each other and talked about her loss...I told her I think we were sent to her that day ...maybe her husband sent us to give her the flowers. The other woman stated that she could really use the flowers because she was really sad that her mother was ill in the hospital. My kids are always retelling this story... "Mom remember when we gave those flowers to those ladies and they cried because they were so happy".

2850 Reads

A Simple Act

My mother recently wrote a thank you letter to Medicare to express appreciation for their patience in guiding her through the new prescription card process. They were totally shocked, and someone called to thank her. Many people everywhere provide services for us. We complain about the buraucracy, but forget that these are people like us who are just trying to make a living.

2466 Reads

Fast Food Freebie

I was at a fast food drive up window, and just got my order and I asked how much was the ladies' order behind me. It was only a couple bucks so I gave them more than enough to cover it and said "Tell her I said 'Have a nice day'" and I smiled and drove off and it made me smile all day and every time I think of it. I ended up receiving a lot more than I gave!!!

1490 Reads

hero work -- give hope

There are so many things out there that people don't understand. Things that are bad and things that are good. One thing that I don't understand is how can a man with millions of dollars stand around in his office while a little child on the same street corner has no place to sleep for the night. Is it really evil, or is it just people? Are people the source of everything good and bad or are there beings out there that control the good and the bad? No one can really know the answer other than knowing that the child might die. Is that it? Are we all just trying to find some way to stop death? Because that is what it all comes down to. But the one thing that can counter any evil is hope. Everyone throws around the word hope as if it were a cliche. ... Read Full Story >>

1836 Reads

Unexpected Help

Last october my mother became sick, I got scared we was gonna loose her so my husband and I made a very quick decision to leave our business and home to move 280 miles where my mom was. We left everyone without saying goodbye, fearing no one would have understood our reason. We were in a financial bind too, our electricty had been shut off and rent was behind. We have two young boys. We got scared and just left. Left our home, our friends that we loved and 85% of our belongings. Two of our friends were very worried about us, calling leaving messages and sending letters. We felt so bad for what we had done. I finally realized what we had done and were doing was very unexceptable, our friends deserved an explanation. So I called, and when asked how we were doing I just cried. We ... Read Full Story >>

4415 Reads

Helping a teacher

Today I was given one of the smile cards by a friend. She said "smile" and ran off. well when I went to class, the teacher became angry with us because we couldn't stop 'disrupting the learning process'. So when he sat at his desk, I went over, and handed him the card and said "you look like you need this right now." As soon as he read it his face lit up and I could tell that he was going to have a better day than the one my class gave him. i'm glad that not all high schoolers are uncaring.

2046 Reads

Small Acts of Trix-Mix

Some deeds are big some are small, but the point is for us to think of other people. I want to share the lovely feeling of joy on being around a bunch of 4 year olds for whom I was a complete stranger yet felt so bonded by my presence and connection. Early this week, I offered to do some ‘story time reading’ at a local preschool. The kids and teachers were very excited about it. It was wonderful to be around these incredible kids who all picked their favorite storybooks for me to read. Due to time constraint, I could only read few books but promised the other kids to read them their favorite story the next time. I already made 2 trips to the school to keep my promise and looking forward to more! I was thinking of ways to show my appreciation to the teachers and staff of an ... Read Full Story >>

4841 Reads

Nine Year Old on a Bus

In order to get to school every morning, I jump on a CTA bus, which drops me off just 5 minutes after I get on. Any one who has ever ridden on a Chicago CTA bus knows the very interesting and unique people a person is able to meet while riding. Today, however, was something quite different. I got on the bus as I normally do. As we approached the next stop, a little girl got on and the bus began to move. With the jump of the bus, the little girl fell forward and I put my arms up to catch her (I was sitting right in the front side of the bus). She got up, smiled at me, said thank you, and proceeded to pay the driver. She was dressed in all pink with a little pink purse to match her ... Read Full Story >>

2362 Reads

Handmade Films

Not a question, just a thought and story about Serendipity: “The gift of finding valuable and agreeable things not sought for.” I fell into something quite beautiful, and completely by accident. I'm not sure why I’m writing you, but I’m practicing being grateful, and I guess I’m grateful that you're out there doing what you do. A friend asked me if I could do anything with hours of home movie footage and pictures she had sitting in a shoe box(I’m an independent filmmaker) so I took it all and made her a little autobiographical sketch of her daughter Fortune. Some other moms saw it, and then I got a paying customer, who wanted me to do one about her two sons. I’ve since done a few more for people. After struggling for years producing and directing my first feature film called awake, I was pretty short for cash. Not only have ... Read Full Story >>

1786 Reads

Smile Counting

Try this, me and my friend went around our school asking people to smile and counting how many people smiled! I got over 70! Try this at home, It gives you that warm feeling inside and most people smile after you have gone!

1609 Reads
  • Posted by Ellie Davis
  • Jan 23, 2006
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It's a Small World

After work one day I was using a pay phone to call a friend. I found a wallet wrapped in tissue. I looked through it and it was a man's wallet. I decided to try to reach the owner but couldn't find anything to but credit cards. So i called the credit card company and explained what happened and gave them my name and phone number. Looking in the wallet a little further I found one of those identification cards you fill out when you get a wallet. I took a chance and called the phone number listed and got the man's wife. I gave her my name, phone number and office address so that her husband could meet me to pick up his wallet. She thanked me and told me he was looking for it and asked me if his money and theatre tickets were still there. ... Read Full Story >>

1933 Reads
  • Posted by Christina Jones
  • Jan 17, 2006
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