Random Acts of Kindness

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We often see and hear about random acts of kindness especially at this time of year.

Is it the holiday season that causes people to give or could it be that Christmas or not they would have done it anyway. Whatever the reason it's nice to hear that there's still kindness left in this world. There are still people with big hearts.

In a world full of wars, murders, abductions, scam artists and identity thieves it's hard to find people to trust. But when the evening news reports on a good deed that someone has done there is a glimmer of hope.

Recently a police officer in New York City was thrust into the national spotlight when he used his own money to purchase shoes for a barefoot homeless man on a frigid night. He says he was just doing his job. Maybe the officer was doing his job but not all people would have gone out of their way to purchase a nice pair of warm boots for a homeless person.

A local news station recently reported that a disabled woman was in desperate need of some repairs to her home. After the report aired a contractor came forward and said he would donate the repairs to her home. This prompted other contractors to pitch in.

And closer to home an anonymous donor donated a car to Tri-Lakes Cares to be given to someone who really needs it. That well deserved person was presented with the car last month.

Acts of kindness and generosity don't always have to be such big gestures. It could be as simple as making a meal for a sick friend or neighbor, shoveling a neighbor's drive way when it snows or mowing their lawn without expecting anything in return.

I came across several kind gestures people do for one another on the website www.randomactsofkindness.org. The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation is a nonprofit organization that believes in kindness and is dedicated to providing resources and tools that encourages acts of kindness.

The foundation provides activities and lesson plans for educators and offers a guide for starting a random act of kindness club on college campuses. The website also gives ideas for kindness and shares inspirational stories.

Some of the ideas for doing random acts of kindness include cleaning up graffiti, give care packs to the homeless, playing music for seniors at assisted living homes, holding the door for someone, pay for someone's meal, thanking first responders, letting someone cut in line or reading to someone. There are hundreds of ideas on the website.

It doesn't take much to extend a kind hand or word to someone. That person you just bought a cup of coffee for just may be short on money. Or the person you helped load groceries into their car may have a bad back and happened to be in pain that day.

You never know what a random act of kindness will do for someone.