The other day I found an old man and his wife sitting by a footpath looking exhausted. On asking I learnt that he had just been discharged from hospital and was going home ( I could make out some bandages around his neck, partially covered by the shirt ).
He and his wife had to walk some distance to reach the bus stop and the hot and humid weather was obviously taking its toll on them both.
I made up my mind to help them and I put them in auto rickshaw (a three wheeler taxi) and paid the fare to their house.
As he got into the auto, I saw the look of relief and gratitude on his face. It was worth million dollars! I felt very blessed and felt sorry for those who saw his condition but did not reach out to help. For me it is very hard to ignore people in need, especially when I am in a position to help.
Who knows ..... some day I may be old .... needing help .....
One sure way to feel good is to do good.
Performing acts of kindness seems to have been a theme in my life for a long time. I started when I was a little girl, when I wrote a poem about friendship to a neighborhood lady who always seemed to be in a sour mood and was especially unfriendly to the neighbhorhood children. When I had children of my own, I continued to do acts of kindness in their presence, so that they might learn by example. Sometimes they participated, and sometimes they just observed. Afterwards, each time we would talk about it and it always brightened my day immensely. One day not too long ago, my son and I were in line at the Dollar store buying an assortment of products. In a line next to ours, a woman was waiting to make her purchases. She had a few necessities and one bag of chips. She stepped up to register to make ... Read Full Story >>
I found a website that sells tiny pewter hearts which are not too expensive, so, I bought a batch and I keep a couple in my pocket most of the time.
Whenever I find the opportunity, when I am out in stores, at a yard sale or at work or anywhere really, I will ask the person I am speaking with to give me their hand. I put two of those little hearts in the palm of their hand saying, "Keep one and pass the other one on."
The responses I get are amazing! If I had won the Lottery there would not be bigger smiles or more excitement. Everyone immediately wants to tell me who is getting the other heart; someone with cancer, their child who was grumpy this morning, and so on.
A little sharing really makes people happy!
P.S. In my other pocket I carry dog biscuits so even their canine friends can be happy!
Many years ago, I was a struggling single mom starting up a new business. It was the holiday season, and my boyfriend and I had decided that we would splurge for just one evening, and go out to dinner. We went to the Red Lobster and it got me thinking about my college waitressing days and how much I enjoyed working during that time: people shopping, feeling joyful, and tipping big. I was in the holiday spirit and wanted to give the waitress a big tip, though I knew it wasn't going to be a big Christmas for us that year. When we had picked what we wanted, I did a quick calculation in my head to make sure that I had enough money before we placed the order. At the end of the meal, when we asked for the check, the waitress replied "It's already taken care of." I didn't understand? She ... Read Full Story >>
I recently went to a meditation session. At the end of the visit our host told us the following Monday was his birthday. He asked if, as a gift to him, we would do something kind for someone else on that day. I thought that was an awesome birthday idea! The following Monday, I saw my neighbor, a new mother, in the yard with her baby. I went outside to say 'hello'. In the course of the conversation, she told me, not in a complaining way but just as a matter of circumstance, about the sleeplessness and the challenges to get anything done with a baby in tow. I remembered my meditation host's request and said, "Hey! Why don't I watch your baby for an hour. I'll just hang out with him here in the back yard and you go in and take an hour to yourself." She was so surprised she almost cried. "Are you ... Read Full Story >>
As I stood in a busy lunch line at Arby's I was becoming increasingly worried I would be late getting back to the office. A grandmother and her grandson were keeping the only available cashier busy. The woman had difficulty with all the choices and, after finally placing the order, became very flustered trying to find her cash or her credit card. While this was going on, the cashier had the most gentle and benevolent expression on his face, never once making the woman feel under pressure. His mood transformed my own. I caught his eye and quietly indicated I would pay for the order. He understood and took care of it without embarrassing the woman. Then when I eventually placed my order he paid for my lunch! As I stood aside waiting for my order two other customers spoke to me about what had happened and said they would also "pay it forward" as a ... Read Full Story >>
Having experienced the joys of giving small gifts to others through regular random acts of kindness, I have increasingly questioned whether I was truly being generous or whether I was seeking ego-gratification or some sort of karmic credit to justify living an otherwise ordinary life. To test this concept, I asked myself if I would be just as generous if the acts were truly anonymous, and I would receive no credit. In seeking out those opportunities, an even more interesting challenge arose - providing random strangers with the opportunity to gift acts of kindness. The first experience was as a restaurant in Times Square with a pre-fixe lunch that included dessert. I did not want any dessert, so I asked the waiter to find another customer and tell the customer that he was offering a free dessert as a random act of kindness. I specifically made sure he did not mention me ... Read Full Story >>
Check out the video below, from a HelpOthers member ...
If you're so moved to support Hywy's 30th b'day by doing a kind act in your community, please leave a comment below about your intention, and it will be sent directly to her -- and wil make her day/year. :)
Much love to all of you who make this world a better place, one kind act at a time!
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has." -- Margaret Mead Join us in celebrating World Kindness Day on Saturday, November 13th by, you guessed it, doing something kind for someone else! :) Want to do something kind, but just can't think of what to do? You're in luck! We've got loads of ideas on our site, where you can find one that moves you personally. We've also included some of our favorites here below, which are quick and easy for everyone to do this Saturday in the spirit of joining the global community to promote kindness. Kindness Ideas Give a friend your favorite inspirational book with a personal note attached. Pay for the person behind you in line. Plant a fruit tree where it will thrive. Leave ... Read Full Story >>
I submited a kindness idea to Helpothers.org $100 kindness contest and I won. Armed with $100 and a mission - WOW! What an amazing week I just had! It started out last weekend - the first goal was to fill 20 “Smile Baggies” to give out. I had so much fun all Saturday picking out the items to buy. I'm a single mom of a teenager, so the opportunity to buy something without worrying about whether it would hurt our monthly budget made me feel like I had won the lottery! I picked out some practical items – a post-it note pad, pen, hand sanitizer wipes, and breath mints. But since it was a “smile baggie”, I also got some fun stuff too – microwave popcorn, hot cocoa, bubble gum, a smile stamp, and a small bottle of bubble bath. I spent Sunday night bagging all the goodies and attached the following letter to each bag: "HI! This ... Read Full Story >>
My second lot of Smile Cards arrived last week, and I have been trying to think of uses for them. Today, before I headed into town for a job interview, I decided to grab a handful and try to use as many as I could throughout the day. The weather was awful, it was pouring with rain, and I would've loved to buy umbrellas for people. But being unemployed, I didn't have the money to spare. So instead, I decided to think of free or really cheap ways to make people smile -- after all, even the little things count. I knew I'd also have to deal with my shyness, or just create anonymous acts of kindness, but it was a challenge I was willing to accept! Before leaving my house, I filled a bag with some items that I no longer use and prepared to drop it off at a charity shop in town. ... Read Full Story >>
We homeschool our children so we sometimes have the flexibility of adjusting our schedule to fit in special things. Today, as part of our 'Kindness Klub' we decided we would head out for an afternoon of giving back. Each of my kids chose from a list of kind things that they wanted to do. I ran down to the local store, picked up a few potted flowers and attached Smile Cards. We then put a few dollars in a plastic bag with a Smile Card. Before we set off on our mission, we read a verse from the Bible about kindness and said a prayer that our efforts would be well-received and help brighten someone's day! First, we stopped off at the local bus stop. We taped the plastic bag to a post inside the bus stop and quickly left ;) Second, my 10 year old daughter said she had seen a house she wanted to drop her flowers off at. She directed me to it. ... Read Full Story >>
Last year my family was moving from New Hampshire to Washington State. In the process of selling our house, giving away most of our belongings (we were moving to a much smaller house and didn't need most of it) and saying goodbye to all the friends we'd made over the past 22 years there; our 27-year-old daughter, who was living with us, became progressively more ill, eventually becoming unable to sit up or walk. Three weeks before we were supposed to close on our house, she was diagnosed with both Lyme disease and a brain tumor, which was pressing on her brainstem. Her excellent neurosurgeon was able to remove the entire tumor, which was non-cancerous, and within days she could walk again and use her arms. Intravenous antibiotics took care of the Lyme disease. When we returned home from the hospital (after 11 days away), there was a big sign welcoming us home ... Read Full Story >>
On the street, outside a restaurant door, my wife and I are chatting with friend about some good news in her life. Right then, a woman comes up to me and asks, "I'm so sorry to interrupt, but I'm really hungry and I'm wondering if you could spare some money?" In our city, there are many pan-handlers, so I typically would just share a kind word and move on. But somehow I feel moved to do something this time. Perhaps it was because we were just conversing about some good events happening in our friend's life and I had a sublte sense of paying it forward. I don't know. "Yeah, sure. I'll take you to eat dinner today. Where do you want to go?" I ask the homeless woman. With a surprising smile, she says: "Oh, there a Taqueria just down that street. I'd love to get a burrito." So the two of us ... Read Full Story >>
I've mainly been using my smile cards in paying for the person behind me at the Burger King and McDonald's drive-thrus that I go to. However, sometimes I find myself yearning to be more creative with them. I have over 250 of them to distribute since I "made" my own and ordered them through a website that prints and ships out custom cards. I have decided to bring kindness to the staff and students at the school where I work. I will keep my eyes and ears open to see whose day could use a smile. I'm sure I'll get to everyone sooner or later or better yet, everyone who receives smile cards will eventually be able to help out and spread the smiles with me. Today, I enlisted another co-worker to anonymously deliver a smile to my first recipient. She was more than happy to be included and said she just loved things like ... Read Full Story >>
2010 is finally over, so why not make the resolution to pay-it-foward? Some one very near and dear to me is very inspired after watching the movie 'Pay-it-Foward', and we both want to make it a goal to spread the seeds of loving kindness in 2011. It would be most appretiated if you join us, and follow the ripples :) If you're reading this let this be your new years resolution! To do one kind act to three people, and have those three people do one kind act to another three people...and have it have a chain reaction. If we can do this in enough sequences we can cover the city. 3x3=9x3=27x3=81 (That's only three sequences). 14 sequences equals approx 14,348,907 people...that's a little more than Manhattan! So it's simple, do one kind thing to three people, and lets make a change! :) Kindness will always endure and we both share the same morals of ... Read Full Story >>
Often we do little acts of kindness and can’t really know what happens next… the people who benefit from the act return to their lives and we return to ours! Our paths may never cross again. But that’s not the case when a member of HelpOthers does a kind act to another member of HelOthers! Here we can chart the ripples as we guide the kindness on its way! Here’s one such story. You may have read Aurelia’s post about making Chex Mix for her family, or Bluebell’s post about receiving a snack from a friend in the US. Well I sent some Karmabucks to Aurelia to find out more about her amazing snack and she offered to send some to me if I was based in the US. Unfortunately I’m not, I live in the UK but luck would have it that I was off to America for a company event last ... Read Full Story >>
In June 2009 the New Jersey Star-Ledger ran a series called "The Chain of Life" about kidney donation chains. These are enabled by one non-related donor giving a kidney to a recipient whose donor (usually a relative) was not compatible. That non-compatible donor then donates to someone else in the same position and thus four or six people could receive new kidneys. I decided I could do that. I contacted the National Kidney Registry and started a six month process that ended with my donating a kidney to a doctor who had been on home dialysis for two years. I didn't know his identity until several months later when we had a very meaningful and emotional introduction. His wife donated her kidney, the same day as our surgery, to someone else, whose donor donated theirs to someone else on the other side of the country! The surgery lasted two hours; I was ... Read Full Story >>
I wrote earlier about my gift home makeover project - Etseth and I would like to tell you about a very special family that I have recently done a makeover for! The mum of this family, was a victim of severe domestic abuse 12 years ago. After years of the being subjected to violence, she summoned enough courage to leave, she moved from England to Wales with her three children and moved into a woman’s refuge. Further down the line, she met someone, got married and they eventually had two more children. Their two oldest have moved out so they are left with three children who are 14,11 and 9 years old. My project was to plaster the lounge/dining room. Whilst I was doing this project, their oldest daughter returned from serving in Afghanistan. Unbeknownst to the family, the daughter had spent lots of her army pay to take the family away for a 2 week holiday. As the ... Read Full Story >>
I just received my first random act of kindness and it has left me feeling really overwhelmed. Just last night my husband and I sat down to discuss our finances. Since his divorce 5 years ago and my job loss 18 months ago things have been going steadily down hill. We are living on overdraft, borrowing from Peter to pay Paul and we came to the sad conclusion that we will have to sell his prized 52 Chev pick-up truck which has been in the family for 55 years! He restored it from scratch 10 years ago. Feeling depressed today, I decided to go to the local mall for a coffee, as I was leaving I noticed what looked like a $20 bill folded up beside the pay phone. Wrapped up inside was a smile card! I could not believe this was happening to me at this point in time and simply had to come home and ... Read Full Story >>
The car went through the stop sign and into the intersection. With no where to go or time to get there, my taxi hit the car dead on. For the next three months I was out of work. I had no savings to speak of. No family to help me. I was in dire straights to be sure. The lady who ran the stop sign had little insurance, barely enough to cover the medical expenses with little left over to pay my living expenses. Just after the accident Justin came to see me in the hospital. We had been co-drivers with the taxi company. We knew each other and worked well together. We were not what one might consider to be friends but we liked each other. He asked me what was going to happen and I told him I didn't know. I was in deep trouble financially until a settlement ... Read Full Story >>
When I was 23 years old I was in a dangerous relationship with the man who was my financee at the time. I was being physically and verbally abused on a daily basis. I was financially tied to him (after he spent all my savings to pay his debts) but I wanted to be free! For the longest time I was too embarrassed to tell my mother about the situation. She had warned me about him. But, eventually, I worked up the courage to tell her and she sent me the money I needed to leave. Before the money arrived he found out what I planned to do. I was so scared of what he might do I decided to leave all my things and just get out of there. Then, on my way to safety, my car died! I had automobile insurance (thanks to my mom) so I called the AAA and had them tow ... Read Full Story >>
I have been sending out smile cards with little gifts around my work place for about six months. Since I place the gifts in our interoffice mailbox, I never know who gets them or see their reactions. As I place gifts in the mail box I imagine people's reactions and it makes me happy to know that maybe I am making someone's day a little brighter.
Today I got to witness the reaction. Apparently, one of the little gifts I left in the mailbox this morning made it's way to a co-worker of mine. Today's gifts was a little cloth kleenex holder than you can leave in your purse and a yarn flower bag tag, so my co-worker, a guy, passed it along to another female co-worker. I heard them talking as they figured out what it was and why they had received it , and the whole concept of "paying forward." I later heard her talking and brainstorming on what she would like to do. It was exciting to hear others get excited about the "pay it forward" concept and hear their ideas.
I truly believe in the power of paying it forward and I have always gotten enjoyment and fulfilment from it. Last year, I was waiting at the traffic lights on my way to work, when my car was rammed from behind. After pulling over, a flustered young man admitted his fault and proceed to apologise and explain why he had not been ‘in the moment’ whilst driving. He told me that he had just been evicted and that his insurance had just run out. I could feel his genuine stress, and as he gave me his details and promised to find a way to pay for it, I tried to comfort him and told him to not worry too much; we will work it out and to please have a great day. When I got to work, my work colleagues hounded me to get a quote quickly and were appalled that I had not collected ... Read Full Story >>
We had our first child in January and were so overwhelmed by all the love and kind wishes that people from around the world shared with us and our little one. She was showered with blessings, flowers and gifts from near and far and in some cases from people we didn't even know personally! :) My husband's business friend had a shirt made with her name on it for the football team he supports, another lady in Ireland (who we have never even met!) had candles made with her name on them, another friend in India had dresses made for her, our aunt knitted lovely hats and sweaters for her, friends bought her loads and loads of adorable clothes, another friend from New York had a blanket made with her name on it, another friend sent us cupcakes from a famous bakery that spelled out "Welcome Sareena," another friend gifted her ... Read Full Story >>
My husband works for a company that provides 24/7 care and housing for people with mental, physical and developmental disabilities. Here in Arizona, brutal budget cuts have slashed funds for those most in need. My husband loves his job and knows he is serving an important purpose, but sometimes the cuts affect morale. I decided to start sending a basket of goodies to work with my husband every Wednesday, which is the day that all staff members come in to pick up their checks. I figured it might give them a little extra reason to smile. On the first Wednesday, I sent these delicious maple leaf cookies I found that are made Canada. I wrapped them individually in cellophane (because there are lots of employees and I wanted everyone to get at little something). When my husband arrived home from work, he brought me the following note from one of his ... Read Full Story >>
I've been practicing at least one intentional act of kindness a day recently. Today, I had a vegan, wrapped cookie in my pocket, courtesy of some friends last night who requested it be paid forward, just itching to find its recipient. :). It's an interesting thing, to observe what thoughts the mind tends towards on a walk in the streets, and equally interesting to observe how it focuses when carrying an intention like, "Whose day can I make, and how??" I was walking through the subway, and passed by a musician strumming his guitar. It was no extraordinary sight, but suddenly I remembered a story of how a world-class violinist played in a subway station once, and only handful of folks stopped to listen to a performance that would normally fill the fanciest concert halls. World-class musician or not, this guy was into it, and so I decided to form an audience ... Read Full Story >>
I had just graduated college and couldnt find a job in Los Angeles. I ended up moving to Las Vegas but left my wife and two kids behind. I missed them all week, and I went home on most weekends to see them. Most of the time I rented a car because it was hard to get my beat up car over the pass to get to and from Vegas. Well, one time I decided to save money, and I took my car. It made it to California, but Sunday on the way back to Vegas it conked out in the broiling Nevada nigh. Not having any idea what I would do, this middle-aged angel drove up. He gave me some water, put in some coolant, and fiddled with the engine a bit. He got it started. I gave him the $12 I had in my wallet and he said he would ... Read Full Story >>
For the first time last year, we featured a top ten list of stories published by our members in 2010 and it was very well received, so we decided to do it again and compile this year's top ten kindness stories of 2011 to share the inspiration! 1. Today You, Tomorrow Me During this past year I’ve had three instances of car trouble: a blowout on a freeway, a bunch of blown fuses and an out-of-gas situation. [...] Each time, when these things happened, I was disgusted with the way people didn’t bother to help. I was stuck on the side of the freeway hoping my friend’s roadside service would show, just watching tow trucks cruise past me. The people at the gas stations where I asked for a gas can told me that they couldn’t lend them out "for safety reasons," but that I could buy a really crappy one-gallon can, ... Read Full Story >>
Yesterday was my step-mom’s birthday. I haven’t been home in a long time so I wanted to stop by the house to see her on this special day. I have been struggling financially so I was dreading the long trip. Gas is so expensive nowadays! Anyway, I filled my tank with gas and set off. I stopped at the shopping mall and found a present. It was the perfect gift and I knew she would love it. But when I got to the cashier my card was declined! I did not have enough money in my account to pay for the gift! So I pondered the issue for a few minutes. I could put it back and get something cheaper, but I knew there was nothing else in the store she would have liked as much. So, I got on my smart-phone and transferred some money from my savings account so I was ... Read Full Story >>