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Have a heart: Be (extra) kind this week

Erika Faust | Interrobang | News | October 17th, 2011



Fanshawe College and the Fanshawe Student Union are teaming up to encourage students to be a little sweeter this week with the 1,000 Acts of Kindness campaign. On October 19, 20 and 21, volunteers will be stationed all around campus to hand out 1,000 candy hearts to remind everyone to "have a heart" and pass the good feelings forward.

Meredith Fraser, of LUSO Community Services, started the 1,000 Acts of Kindness campaign in 2009. "The goal is to work toward ending hate by choosing to spread kindness instead," she said during the campaign in 2010. Last year, over 54,000 kind acts were registered on the 1,000 Acts of Kindness website throughout October.

"We want to get involved in this London-based initiative," said John Young, Operations Manager for the FSU.

"An act of kindness can be something as easy as opening a door (for someone), helping lift a box, giving somebody a call, talking to your mom," he continued. "It doesn't have to be a big thing, and it makes you feel good."

Young recalled his most recent act of kindness, when he helped some high school students at Rainbow Cinemas downtown. Three young people were waiting for the use of a payphone, and one had lost his wallet. They had no money and were hoping to call someone for a ride, said Young. "They were flustered and frustrated, and they were scared they were going to miss the last bus (home)." Sensing the youths' distress, Young pulled out his wallet and gave them a bus ticket. "They were so blown away," he recalled. "They thanked me profusely — hundreds of times — and they left to catch their bus."

"It felt great to help," he said. "It was an actual incident I came upon that I could impact ... It's that sort of stuff that you hope other people will do." It was simple, inexpensive, only took a minute and his small act really brightened some people's night, he added.

So whether it's helping out a stranger or a best friend, whether it's as big as helping someone move or as small as giving them a bus ticket, have a heart this week, Fanshawe. Be kind!

For more information on the London-wide 1,000 Acts of Kindness campaign or to register your kind act online, visit 1000acts.ca.
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