A few weeks back, we introduced you to 1AWeek - a social media movement and nonprofit startup aiming to promote acts of kindness. As awesome as this idea is (not to mention the prizes up for grabs for those who submit their acts to the organisation’s Facebook page), their goal to create positive change can’t be achieved without the involvement of all of you. Your challenge (should you
choose to accept it) is to contribute in your own way, by performing one random act of kindness each week. Not too big of an ask, but where to start?
Well, that’s where we’ve got you covered. Here are just a few ideas to start you off.
1) Donate Something.
When we think of donations, we often think money - giving to a charity, leaving an extra generous tip to your server, paying for someone else’s coffee, even leaving change for some lucky stranger to find. But, of course, not all of us have that much extra cash lying around. Fear not, there are plenty of other things you can give to brighten someone’s day. You could clear out your wardrobe and donate items to a charity story, or give your time to a community event. There’s always volunteering opportunities, including one-off events if you can’t make an ongoing commitment. Whatever you give, the world will be just a bit better off for it.
2) Send Something.
Yeah, so, letters may have become a method of communication reserved for elderly relatives to send their birthday wishes - but isn’t it exciting getting a physical note addressed to you? Go old school and send a letter to a friend or relative who you haven’t seen in a while. Or, if that’s a tad dated for you, send a nice text message to a friend, just to let them know how much you appreciate them. For so little effort, you could make someone’s day, and don’t we need a little more gratitude in the world?
3) Make Something.
Are you a wizard in the kitchen? Bake some goodies and share them with your classmates! Better with arts and crafts? There’s so many options - friendship bracelets, personalised cards, just about anything can make a cute surprise gift for someone you care about. Write a poem or a song about someone and send it to them, write a bedtime story to read to your younger siblings. When you get creative with it, the options for homemade gifts with a personal touch are endless.
4) Get Involved.
There’s so many ways to have your voice heard and contribute to a good cause. If you’re passionate about the environment, pick up litter or spend some time sorting the recycling. If you’re more into social issues, you could sign online petitions, start a fundraising page for a charity you care about, or write a letter to your local member about some change you want to see in the world. Speaking of letter writing (are you noticing a theme here?), you can even write and send letters to refugee kids in detention camps, sick kids in hospital, or soldiers oversees. Even strangers can benefit from just a few of your words.
5) Help Someone Out
Everyone needs a little help every now and then - surprise someone in your life by giving up your time to make their lives a little easier. Offer to mow the lawn for your neighbours, or babysit a busy family friend’s kids for free. Maybe your parents have been overwhelmed lately - do a little extra around the house, help out your younger siblings with their homework, or offer to cook a meal for everyone. Offer up just a bit of your time, and you’ll see how big of a difference it makes to someone who’s under stress.
Of course, these are only a few ideas - you can find many, many more online. Just search for acts of kindness, or visit 1AWeek’s social media pages for inspiration from people who’ve already taken up the challenge. What are you waiting for? Get out there, and make the world a better place.