Stop. Today is very special. Very, very special.
Today is World Kindness Day. A day to encourage random acts of kindness. A day to remember that the world isn’t spiralling out of control—despite what media headlines may announce—but a place where billions of tiny, kind acts are performed every single day.
The idea is to remind one another to be generous in thoughts and actions. To remind one another that being human is to share and to give. The ultimate goal is to help us all become a bit more human and to celebrate the small things that make humanity great.
Why November 13?
The concept of World Kindness Day came out of Japan’s Small Kindness Movement, which was founded in 1963 after the president of Tokyo University was mugged in a public place and nobody helped him. He started a movement calling for bravery in small acts of kindness that he hoped would spread through Japan. Fast-forward to 1997, when World Kindness Day was formed by the World Kindness Movement, an apolitical, nonreligious international organization.
The mission of the World Kindness Movement (WKM) is to inspire individuals and connects nations to create a kinder world. The WKM encourage and support individuals, communities, cities and nations to establish independent kindness movements to join the World Kindness Movement to see a kinder world realised in our lifetime.
The mission of the WKM is to inspire individuals towards greater kindness by connecting nations to create a kinder world. Members of the movement include over 28 nations with representatives from Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, India, Italy, Japan, Liberia, Malaysia, Mexico, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Romania, Scotland, South Africa, South Korea,Switzerland,Thailand, United Arab Emirates, Ukraine, United Kingdom and with six member organisations in the USA.
In 2017 at the 9th General Assembly in Seoul, we welcome WKM’s new International Council representing South Korea, Switzerland, India, Australia, Netherlands, Nigeria, China, Mexico who strive to inspire its members and our world leaders, that the vision of a kinder world can be realised in our lifetime
What can you do to mark World Kindness Day?
What can you do to mark November 13: World Kindness Day? In 2014, Victoria, B.C. resident, Angela Frattaroli wondered the same thing before deciding on her random act. Along with her mother and friend, the trio celebrated World Kindness Day by giving away 2,000 flowers to strangers in downtown Victoria, B.C.
Not too keen on the flower idea? Here are 10 other ideas to celebrate World Kindness Day. Now go out and pay it forward.
- Bake your neighbours some cookies.
- When going through a drive-through or getting your morning coffee, pay for the order behind you.
- Smile and say ‘good morning’ or ‘good afternoon’ to everyone you meet.
- Give at least three people a genuine compliment.
- Leave hand-written in the mailbox of your neighbours letting them know they are appreciated.
- Hold the door open, whether it’s an elevator door, an entry door or a car door.
- Leave a very generous tip (at the hotel, restaurant, for your cabbie) and a note that says “Thank you!”
- Text or email someone and tell them how awesome they are, better still, call them and have a personal chat to let them know they are loved.
- Buy a lottery ticket for a stranger.
- Bring doughnuts to work.
There are those that buck the whole concept of a day to be kind. They detest the idea of applauding an attribute that should be at the core of our personalities. There’s some meat on that bone. But the reality is the world can be conceived as a cruel, cold and uncaring place. When we broadcast so many random acts of violence and hate it’s hard not to withdraw into fear and tribalism. One way to combat this self-imposed isolation is to celebrate World Kindness Day—held every year on November 13—as well as Random Acts of Kindness day (held every year on February 17). Just two days of the year, where we can switch our focus and concentrate on all the random acts of kindness that occur every single day of the year.