It’s Random Acts of Kindness Day, the one day of the year when old ladies across the world can head to the nearest pavement, confident of a helping hand to cross the road.
A fantastic concept and one that is promoted across schools, scouting associations and children’s groups everywhere, it’s been lovely to see my own kids embracing the day.
However, how many adults are as aware of the day, or indeed of the need to be kind 365 days of the year?
In a way, it’s sad that this day is even a day, random acts of kindness should be something we all do, without too much thought, every day.
In reality though, kindness can be thin on the ground. My last trip to the supermarket is a case in point. I had gone in for one loaf of bread, to make sandwiches for the next day’s packed lunches. Upon reaching the till, however, I was just beaten by a woman who was seemingly buying a month’s food for a small army.
Despite catching her eye, she proceeded to ignore me and unloaded her enormous trolley, while I stood there with my one loaf of Mighty White.
What would it have given for her to just let me pay for my single item? Thankfully, another till opened up and I was able to elbow barge my way past a few similarly sized trolleys to claim the spot.
This is a case in point. Far too often, we are so all consumed in ourselves that we don’t allow any room for kindness. However, thankfully there are people in this world for whom kindness is second nature.
Every Thursday I take my kids to our local running club, where I also run as a senior. Over the years I have gotten to know the junior coaches well and I am always blown away by their dedication.
All volunteers, the coaches give up their evenings three times a week, as well as countless weekends, to instill a love of running in the club’s junior athletes. They do it purely out of kindness, and undoubtedly often at personal expense too.
And our nation relies on people like this. Scout leaders, Guides leaders, football, cricket and rugby coaches, all these people – and countless others – demonstrate incredible kindness every day.
These are the people who truly deserve to be in receipt of a random act of kindness, whether it’s today or any other day.
So, thank you, to every single volunteer out there. You’re amazing.