Start the year off positively with Windsor’s first Random Act of Kindness Week | MyWindsorNow.com

Start the year off positively with Windsor’s first Random Act of Kindness Week

James Redmond
jredmond@mywindsornow.com

A new year can bring new opportunity, and two Windsor High School mothers decided to capitalize on that.

Windsor ended last year on a rough note. Between a fatal crash that claimed the life of a Windsor High School student and the tragic suicide of another student only a month later, the town was grieving.

Over coffee, just a few days before Christmas, Kim Schutt and Lori Couch devised plan to bring cheer and good will back to their town. They decided to encourage spontaneous and impulsive acts of benevolence and compassion throughout town.

"As we brainstormed further, we turned to the notion that doing something kind and unexpected for others is therapeutic and makes everyone involved feel good," Schutt said. "So why not encourage a week of random acts of kindness to get the year off on a positive note?"

Partnering with the town of Windsor, the Windsor-Severance Re-4 School District and several other organizations around Windsor, they decide to invite the whole community to participate in Windsor's first Random Acts of Kindness Week.

During each day the Random Acts of Kindness Week — which starts today and runs through Saturday — community members are challenged to participate in daily activities focuses on fostering community support and kindness.

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Each day offers a fresh challenge to the community, like encouraging them to do something nice for a neighbor, thank an educator or recognize the work of emergency responders.

"While we would like to think that this was a really brilliant and unique idea, when we looked around on the internet we learned that other communities have sponsored similar events," Schutt said. "However, this is our opportunity to put our own special Windsor spin on it."

Throughout the week participants can share their daily challenge stories through social media using the hashtag #WindsorKindness. If they tag the town of Windsor in their post — @windsorgov — it could end up as one of the posts featured on the town's social media pages throughout the week, said Windsor's communication manager Katie VanMeter.

"You always hear these stories about how people 'pay it forward' or stop to say 'thanks' to somebody, and it made their day," Couch said. "I think those are impactful and I think that's what we need right now, something that's positive, something that spreads positivity and kind of spreads the love around."

People could share about a great experience in town, or how a particular teacher helped them or their child, a story of kindness, she explained. Anything from someone paying for a stranger's coffee to anything else that helps makes the day better.

"This week gives us a formal opportunity to reach out to one another. We look forward to hearing all of the stories from folks who participate in the daily challenges," Couch said. "I hope it sets a tone of positivity for this year, starts us out on the right note, creates an environment where people are more encouraged to write a note and share a word of thanks."

"Let's face it, Windsor is a pretty tight-knit and wonderful community to begin with, but the events of November and early December definitely took a toll on a lot of people," Schutt said. "I see this as a chance to simply step things up a notch, and take this opportunity to reach out and let someone know that they are important, they matter, and make them smile."

Random Acts of Kindness Week daily challenges

The Windsor community is invited to participate in Windsor’s first Random Acts of Kindness Week Today through Saturday.

Each day of the Random Acts of Kindness Week, community members are invited to participate in daily challenges and share their experiences via social media by using the hashtag #WindsorKindness and by tagging the Town of Windsor in their post. Select stories will be featured on the town’s social media pages throughout the week.

The daily challenges include:

» Sunday: “Service Sunday,” kick off the week with a good deed or act of service. Drop off donations of nonperishable food items, diapers and other baby items or school supplies at Safeway, 1535 Main St., and King Soopers, 1520 Main St.

» Monday: “Recognize First Responders,” thank you banners for Windsor Police and Windsor Severance Fire Rescue will be available to sign at Safeway, 1535 Main St., the Community Recreation Center, 250 11th St., and Clearview Library, 720 3rd St.

» Tuesday: “Reach Out and Write,” connect with someone who has impacted your life. Printable notecards will be available on the town of Windsor’s Facebook page — http://www.facebook.com/windsorgov.

» Wednesday: “Pay it Forward,” repay others rather than the person that helped you. For example, pay for the person’s coffee behind you in line.

» Thursday: “Thank an Educator,” recognize a teacher, mentor or school staff member that has made a difference.

» Friday: “Senior Smiles,” brighten the day of a Windsor senior citizen.

» Saturday: “Neighborly Nod,” do something kind for your neighbor — shovel their walk, bring them goodies or just spend time together.

The Windsor Random Acts of Kindness Week is organized by a grassroots citizen committee and supported by the Weld RE-4 School District, Weld RE-4 Education Foundation, Windsor Chamber of Commerce, Windsor Severance Fire Rescue, Clearview Library District, Windsor Now, Windsor Rotary Club, Windsor Optimist Club, the Downtown Development Authority, and the Town of Windsor.

To help spread the word, visit the Random Acts of Kindness media kit for social media graphics, flyers, website text and more — http://bit.ly/WindsorKindnessMedia.

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