Five years ago Beyond Borders Circle of Change committee members were working through how the group could evolve and move forward. We were no longer offering the “Challenge Days” that had happened within the schools. The Red Cross Anti-Bullying Program had grown to have an amazing team of students at both HRHS and LCHS; elementary schools did and still appreciate the work they do with their students. Parent presentations had been successful but were no longer the direction we wanted to go. That left us struggling with knowing what was next for us.
And then someone suggested small grants for schools to support their cultures of kindness. Fast forward 5 years.
It’s hard to capture the effect kindness can have on a community in words or in ways that translate well into a blog. But there are other things that are easy to share:
– Over 70 grants have been shared with LPSD schools and LCSD schools;
– 5 schools have submitted a grant every year that the program has been offered;
– 10 schools have submitted a grant 4 of the five years the program has been offered;
– Projects have supported seniors, long term care facilities and residents, the SPCA and other pet serving organizations, Residents in Recovery, the Men’s Shelter, food banks, emergency services, people working in essential services, classrooms struggling to connect with each other, families who were experiencing very challenging times, neighborhoods around schools and more.
After all the challenges, new ways of working and uncertainty of the past nearly two years it is almost hard to believe that there was a time we brainstormed on a white board, not a jamboard. It is also very uplifting to know that through all of that, schools are so committed to practicing kindness that we have had the privilege of offering Kindness Wins grants for 5 years.
We would like to offer our sincerest thanks to all those who work so hard to make this project a success year after year. We know that the application and then the great pictures we get to see are only the surface of the hard work school staff, division staff, community partners, funders and others put in to make the Kindness Wins grant project what it is.
Finally, I want to close this with a favorite quote of one of our members, I don’t know who to attribute to, if you do, let us know.
“Kindness doesn’t solve everything, but it solves unkindness”.
For more information please check us out at;
Facebook: Beyond Borders Circle of Change
Bonita Brick, Beyond Borders Circle of Change member