+
True
Hasbro Be Fearless Be Kind

One morning in Santa Cruz, a man in a dusty SUV rolled into town looking for help.

“He was distraught,” says Chyna Darby in an email. She and her young daughter Reese, 11, listened as the man asked for directions to the highway, any highway. He kept telling them he was trying to find his wife. Inside the car were all of the man’s belongings and his three small dogs.

Eventually, the Darbys figured out that the man was fleeing his house in Northern California, where wildfires were consuming entire towns. “He had lost his home and had not slept in three days,” she says. “He just wanted to find somewhere safe.”


The Darbys helped the man gain his bearings as much as they could. But even after he drove off, young Reese couldn’t stop thinking about the man and others like him who had lost everything. “She felt how devastated he was,” Chyna says. Reese decided to do something about it. Little did she know, that desire to make a difference would only be the beginning.

Photo courtesy of Pacific Elementary.

Kids cope with tragedy in a lot of different ways. Reese and her friends responded by launching into action.

That night, Reese and her friend Brooke Andrews put their heads together to figure out how they could help the victims of the NorCal fires. The next day, they brought their ideas to school and started planning a bake sale.

“It was one week from idea to execution!” says Chyna. “As the week went on, the event took on a life of its own.”

Photo courtesy of Pacific Elementary.

What started as a conversation between two kids was now a movement: students were baking, soliciting donations, making posters and signs, and booking entertainment.Three of the kids even wrote jokes and sold them typed up on paper.

It was an act of kindness that made a real difference.

“The tables weren't even set up on Pacific Avenue downtown before members of the Santa Cruz community were buying goods and donating money,” says Chyna.

Over the course of just two days, the kids raised more than $1,800 for the victims of the Northern California fires.

Photo courtesy of Pacific Elementary.

The bake sale had a lot more impact than just the donations it provided to victims and their families.

It also gave the kids an opportunity to process a pretty difficult topic — loss — in a positive and healthy way.

“It came up during class, recess, lunch, carpools, and in homes,” Chyna says. The discussions the kids were having about the fires, both with adults and among themselves, made it clear that they were deeply affected.

But after the fundraiser, the students were able to look back and see how helping others in times of need is good not only for the people receiving help, but for them too.

Photo courtesy of Pacific Elementary.

“It felt great,” said Iphigenia Wilder, 9, in a written statement. “I love helping people.” Armiel Goodman, 8, wrote, “It felt good to know that I was helping people in need.”

“The fundraiser was a bit of the ‘art therapy’-type experience,” says Chyna. “The process provided the students a hands on avenue for processing, feeling empathy, and becoming empowered to help ... all while having fun.”

The kids also had an opportunity to gain valuable skills from the experience of planning and executing a charitable event.

The teachers at the school used the opportunity to engage kids in different interdisciplinary lessons related to the fire and the fundraiser.

“A few of the older students did research into aspects of the fire that interested them,” says Chyna. “Where do people go if they lose their house? What services provide support for disasters?”

Photo courtesy of Pacific Elementary.

Younger kids were given math assignments to help calculate the profits from the sale and the expense of mailing out the gift cards to the victims. And ultimately, it was the kids who were allowed to discuss, vote on, and eventually decide where the funds raised should go.

Pacific Elementary’s event shows us how kids can have an incredible, positive impact — both on those in need and on their own personal development.

When given the opportunity, kids like the students of Pacific Elementary can use their creativity, compassion, and enthusiasm to do great things and make a difference in people's lives.

“The big picture hope is that their connection to this event and their efforts to help will engender empathy and a feeling of empowerment that will stay with them as they move in the world,” says Chyna.

“While our achievements may be a drop in the bucket, our hope is this will help those it reaches, and be a stepping stone to greater works in the future.”

That’s our hope too.

"Time is the one thing we cannot increase.”

Over his seven years as host of “The Daily Show,” Trevor Noah brought us laughter and valuable insights, even with a pandemic and political upheaval. He made such a positive mark that the announcement of his departure from the show came as bittersweet news to fans.

During an interview with Hoda Kotb of “Today,” Trevor Noah gave further explanation to his personal decision to leave, and in typical Noah fashion, it touched on something universal in the process.

“I realized during the pandemic,” he told Kotb, “everyone talks about a ‘work-life balance.’ But that almost creates the idea that your work and your life are two separate things. When in fact, I came to realize during the pandemic that it’s just a ‘life-life balance.’ It’s just your life.”

Keep ReadingShow less
Photo by Roméo A. on Unsplash

Cat hilariously rats out owner in front of the landlord

Maybe it's a right of passage into adulthood or maybe some landlords discriminate against pets because they can't tell people kids are forbidden in their residence. Either way, just about everyone has lived in a rental home that didn't allow pets. Most people just abide by the rules and vow to get a pet when they find a new home.

Some people, on the other hand, get creative. I once came across a post on social media where someone claimed their pit bull puppy was actually a Silver Labrador. But one woman on TikTok was harboring a secret cat in her rental that had a no pets policy, and either her cat was unaware or he was aware and was simply being a jerk.

My money is on the latter since cats are known to be jerks for no reason. I mean, have you ever left something on the counter for a few minutes? They make it their mission to knock it on the floor. So I fully believe this fluffy little meow box wanted to make his presence known in an effort to rat out his owner.

Keep ReadingShow less
Joy

Delivery driver's reaction to snacks left for him shows how a little kindness goes a long way

“Seeing a grown man get so excited about Capri Sun is extra wholesome."

'Dee' the delivery guy stoked to get some Doritos.

Sometimes the smallest gesture can change someone’s day for the better, especially when that act of kindness lets them know their work is appreciated. Over the last few years, delivery drivers have done a fantastic job keeping people healthy during the pandemic, so Toni Hillison Barnett told News 11 that she and her husband started a tradition of leaving snacks for their drivers on the front porch.

The Barnetts, who live in Louisville, Kentucky, can see the drivers' reactions by recording them on their doorbell cameras. “I live for reactions like this to our snack cart! Thx to all of the delivery drivers out there! We appreciate you!” Toni wrote on an Instagram post.

Recently, one of the Barnetts’ delivery guys, a joyous fellow that we believe is known as Dee, went viral on TikTok because of his positive reaction to receiving some snacks during his deliveries. The snacks are tasty, no doubt. But it’s also wonderful to feel appreciated. After Toni posted the video it received over 100,000 views.

“Oh my God, you guys are the best, I gotta take a snapshot of this,” Dee can be heard saying in the video. “Oh, Capri Suns are my favorite, Yes!”

Keep ReadingShow less
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash
woman holding a cup of tea, writing in a notebook

It's no secret that everyone could use a little kindness in their lives and it can come in many forms. Sometimes it's the neighbor cutting your grass when your husband's away and you're too busy to get to it yourself. Other times it's sending a card to the elderly widow down the street.

One woman in Arkansas has taken to spreading kindness through writing letters to strangers. Allison Bond, 25, started writing letters over a year ago during COVID-19 when she couldn't attend school due to her medical condition. Bond has cerebral palsy and is at greater risk for serious illness should she contract the virus. Writing letters was an act of kindness that didn't require a trip out of the house.

Bond began by writing to soldiers and inmates. In fact, the first letter she received back was from a soldier. Bond told 5News, "I have one framed from a soldier. He had all his battle buddies sign it. So I framed it so I could put it up." She's kept every letter she's received.

Keep ReadingShow less