Today we’re continuing our celebration of Admit Your Happy Month by celebrating another important milestone – The BIG 3-0! This week Be Kind to Humankind Week turns 30. It was created by Lorraine Jara in Toms River, New Jersey in 1988. She was just 30 years old at the time. If you hop on over to her website, bk2hk.org, you’ll find the tragic story that started it all.
She read an article in the paper about two young men who nearly drowned when their rowboat overturned. Two ladies saw them clinging to the rowboat and pulled them aboard their vessel. With no motor or radio to call for help, they were at the mercy of the boaters passing by. Unfortunately, a few ignored their cries for help, and by the time someone actually stopped, one of the young men had died.
It’s devastatingly unfortunate that stories like this happen more often than you would think. Psychology calls it the Bystander Effect. People are less likely to offer help to a victim when other people are present. It’s safe to say that each of the boaters passing by figured they can’t be bothered and someone else will be coming by shortly to deal with it. What they didn’t know is that time was at play. Had someone who had the chance to stop sooner shown a little kindness to their fellow man and done so, maybe there’d be an extra life in the world today.
It’s with this story in her mind, and heart, that Jara started Be Kind to Human Kind week.
“People need people; it’s as simple as that! In order to have the power to make the world a better place, we must first change our attitudes for the better. We can create our own good news if we choose to do so!” – Loraine Jara
The aim is simple, spend a week focusing on the little things you can do to help your fellow man. She offers a theme for each day to focus on different areas of life including:
- Motorist Consideration Monday
- Touch-A-Heart Tuesday
- Willing-To-Lend-A-Hand Wednesday
- Thoughtful Thursday
- Forgive Your Foe Friday
- Speak Kind Words Saturday
- Sacrifice Our Wants for Others’ Needs Sunday.
And she’s been doing this for 30 years. Let’s just take a moment to add this up. Seven acts of kindness each year for 30 years. That’s 210 acts over 30 years. That may seem like a small number, but that’s potentially 210 people touched by one person’s kindness. And that number gets greatly expanded the more people who participate, and the more often they participate.
Just remember the starfish story. You may be able to save only one starfish at a time, but it will make a world of difference to that one, and inspire other people to follow in your footsteps.
So how will you Be Kind to Human Kind this week? Please keep the orphans in our schools in mind and consider making a donation to our Happy Jar at hope4hearts.org/donate.