From Class Project to International Movement
It began with a simple classroom assignment: Perform one random act of kindness every day for a month, and write it down. But by the end of December 2016, this group of sixth-graders weren’t ready to quit kindness. Once the month had ended, the students wanted to continue spreading kindness,, but to do so they first needed a name. The class decided to call themselves the SAKtivists- the first three letters standing for Student Acts of Kindness. And no group was official without a logo, so we brainstormed all our ideas together to create the logo we have today! Before we could head out to the community, we the students decided that we needed business cards that could be passed out with each good deed, encouraging recipients to pay it forward.
That first year, the SAKtivists bought drinks for strangers at Starbucks, left kind notes on the desk of second-graders, taped candy and microwavable popcorn to a Redbox movie rental kiosk at the grocery store, and handed out water to joggers at a nearby lake. We also wrote thank-you letters to troops, gave balloons to kids in the park, and started documenting it all on social media.
Eventually the school year ended, but the SAKtivists didn’t.
The program continued on the next year, with the new class finding unique ways to spread kindness, as well as expanding our reach through new social media accounts.
"Anyone can be kind."
In the summer of 2018, we decided to branch out and create weekly kindness challenges for our peers. Though the video challenges were originally created for our school, we created an online form for others to sign up to receive our challenges. Within two weeks, we had more than 60 classes around the world participating. From kindergarten to high school, from California to Pennsylvania, we now have over 170 classes participating... we are spreading kindness, one week at a time.
Our goal is to show that kindness doesn’t have to take the form of a grand gesture to make a difference. With challenges including thanking a community employee, and holding the door open, our challenges are often pretty simple tasks. We really try to make sure every challenge can be done by anyone in any socioeconomic background, any kind of home life. We want people to know that anyone can be kind.