Celebrate Random Acts of Kindness
BeKind UNM Car Magnets and Stickers are HERE!
3 easy ways to get your FREE BeKind. Be Courteous. Get Home Safe. magnet or bike sticker:
- Stop by the Vice President for Student Affairs Office on the Main UNM Campus in Scholes Hall, Room 229.
- Call 505.277.4296
- Email email@example.com
We are pleased to be partnering with Albuquerque Mayor Richard J. Berry's office to support their ABQ Kindness initiative and help them reach their goal of 1 million kind acts in our city by December 1 of this year.
The goal of the campaign is to spread awareness of the importance of kindness across Albuquerque.
"It is my belief that you are never too old or young to implement kindness in your everyday life," remarked Mayor Berry. "Albuquerque is already a great city with great, kind people, but you can never show too much kindness to your neighbor. We have exceptional youth in our community and I know they will lead the way to show adults just want it means to be kind."
Mayor Berry invites all Albuquerque citizens to download the free app, called ABQKindness, from the Apple or Android app stores. Each act of kindness submission will count towards Albuquerque's overall acts of kindness and will be tracked within the app. Please visit their website: https://www.cabq.gov/mayor/news/mayor-launches-youth-driven-kindness-initiative for more information on how to get the app.
2017 BeKind UNM Celebration
For the eighth year, the Division of Student Affairs is partnering with the UNM BeKind Committee which includes members of UNM staff, students and the community to celebrate and promote random acts of kindness Feb. 1-18. New this year is Kindness Carnival featuring a teddy bear toss where you can make a donation and win prizes at the same time; games and goodies to be held on Monday, Feb. 13 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the UNM Student Union Building.In addition to the carnival, several of the past events are still planned and goodies are still available including Be Kind. Be Courteous. Get Home Safe. car magnets, BeKind UNM buttons, candy, and an opportunity to create a Valentine for a veteran or hospital patient.
This year, as in years past we are also partnering with Nusenda Credit Union and UNM campus departments to host a teddy bear drive which runs from Feb. 1-17 to benefit the Albuquerque Police Department. “The teddy bear drive is a great way to give back to the community through kindness,” says Dr. Kim Kloeppel. “The bears will be kept in APD patrol cars to be given to children in traumatic situations to help ease some of the stress.”
Additionally, both Satellite Coffee and Nusenda Credit Union locations in the UNM Student Union Building will be hosting a Fill It Forward event where students can receive a free cup of coffee and help fill a donation jar to benefit the UNM Lobo Food Pantry. A social media challenge will also take place.
University Libraries has organized a “Soup and Socks” collection from Feb. 13 to Feb. 28 to benefit the Albuquerque Indian Center in southeast Albuquerque. The Albuquerque Indian Center serves the urban Native American community by providing a large range of social services to their clients including the distribution of food and clothing to those in need. All four of our libraries (Zimmerman, Centennial, Parish and Fine Arts & Design) will have collection boxes located in the lobby area. The goal is 500 cans of soup and 500 pairs of socks. Please contact Nancy Bennett at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Staff Council is also sponsoring a Lovin’on Little Lobos collection.
Take the 2016 BeKind UNM Holiday Challenge with #ABQKindness
“You are never too old or too young to implement kindness into everyday life,” says Albuquerque Mayor, Richard J. Berry, who recently launched the new #ABQKindness initiative and app as a way to encourage kindness throughout our city. His goal is to reach 1 million acts of kindness.
The app promotes, tracks, and celebrates acts of kindness across Albuquerque, and is available on both Apple and Android platforms. Users can be as simple or detailed as they want when using the app to log their acts of kindness.
“It’s so easy to use,” says Dr. Kim Kloeppel, chair of the BeKind UNM team. “The app provides an easy way to not only track all the kind acts that are happening in our city, but is also a great way to showcase those acts and encourage others to do the same.”
The BeKind UNM team, along with members of the Mayor's Youth Advisory Council (MYAC), and several other organizations have partnered with the Mayor to serve as “kindness ambassadors” and help our city reach its 1 million acts of kindness goal.
To contribute to this challenge, participants are asked to: 1) make a toy donation at one of the following locations anytime from Nov. 7-Dec. 7:
- UNM Career Services (UAEC 2nd Floor)
- UNM Student Affairs, Scholes Hall Room 229
- UNM Children’s Campus (1210 University NE)
- UNM Recreational Services (Johnson Center),
or donate time or money through the LODLF website or via (505)362-6073; 2) download the #ABQkindness app on their phone; and 3) submit their act using the 2016 BeKind UNM Holiday Challenge optionon their entry.
LODLF is a grassroots movement, committed to making a difference in the New Mexico community by providing educational development and quality of life assistance. For the past seven years, this organization has been providing food and toys during the holiday season to families in need. This year, they have increased the number of families served to 300.
BeKind UNM Pays it Forward to APD
Members of the BeKind UNM committee will deliver teddy bears and other toys to Albuquerque Police Chief Gordon Eden and area commanders on Friday, March 25 at 9 a.m. in front of the police station on 4th and Marquette.
The teddy bears and other toys were collected during the BeKind UNM celebration, which was held on The University of New Mexico campus at the beginning of February. All tolled, over 300 bears and other toys were donated to benefit both APD and the UNM Children’s Hospital.
Several police commanders will also be on hand at the meeting to fill up their cars with the teddy bears before they leave for their respective areas of the city. The bears will be kept in APD patrol cars to be given to children in traumatic situations to help ease some of the stress.
“The teddy bear drive is a great way to give back to the community through kindness,” says Dr. Kim Kloeppel, chief operations officer, UNM Division of Student Affairs, and BeKind UNM committee chair. “We are hoping that these bears will help spread kindness throughout our city and serve as a reminder of how easy it is to be kind to one another.”
The UNM Division of Student Affairs in conjunction with several UNM departments, Albuquerque businesses, and community groups sponsors the UNM BeKind celebration and other kindness initiatives. For more information please visit the BeKindUNM webpage or call 505-277-0952.
#BeKindUNM Social Media Challenge
Make a commitment to do one kind thing today! Download our Kindness Challenge template, write one kind thing you plan to do today and send it to our BeKindUNM Instagram page with the #BeKindUNM.
Be Kind. Be Courteous. Get Home Safe. Car Magnets
As part of the UNM BeKind initiative, and in the wake of the recent tragic events happening in our community, country, and the world, the UNM BeKind team wanted to do its part to not only help prevent road rage incidents, but other senseless, violent acts. Therefore, in conjunction with the UNM Division of Student Affairs, the team designed a small reminder in the form of a car magnet and sticker, which reads, “Be Kind, be courteous, get home safe.”
“Kindness is a powerful tool,” says Dr. Kim Kloeppel, chief operations officer with the UNM Division of Student Affairs, and chair of the UNM BeKind committee. “The car magnets and stickers are a small reminder to all of us to be courteous and safe on the road.”
The magnets and stickers come at a time when the state is stepping up its efforts to make our streets a little safer and kinder. The new road rage prevention effort, Operation Lilly, End Road Rage, kicked off last week and has more officers patrolling Albuquerque interstates and major roadways in honor of Lilly Garcia, the 4-year-old shot in a road rage incident in October. Operation Lilly targets aggressive drivers and issues citations to those in violation of the law and handing out placards to people they pull over, urging them to avoid making gesture or eye contact with angry drivers.
Kloeppel hopes when drivers see the magnets, they will stop and think, and remember to just breathe and not overreact to slights on the roadway. One way to make small changes in the community is to be kind. I challenge us as a community to continue to support and assist each other by, as Maya Angelou said, “being the rainbow in someone else’s cloud--one random act of kindness can be that rainbow.”
The UNM BeKind initiative is devoted to encouraging random acts of kindness. Annually, in February, the Division of Student Affairs spearheads the celebration of Random Acts of Kindness Week on the UNM campus, however kindness is encouraged each and every day!
The car magnets and stickers are FREE and available for pick in the UNM Student Affairs office, located on the UNM main campus, Scholes Hall, Room 229 (1800 Roma NE), or you can call 505-277-0952 or email email@example.com and request one be sent to you. There is also a larger, downloadable sign that can be obtained on the UNM BeKind webpage and used as a reminder in the office, home, or anywhere.
To read the full story, please click here.
25 Simple Random Acts of Kindness Ideas
- Send someone a hand written note of thanks.
- Make a card at home and send it to a friend.
- Adopt a stray animal.
- Put some coins in another student’s parking meter.
- Buy a coffee for a student or co-worker.
- Walk your friend’s dog.
- Give a compliment about your server to their manager.
- Volunteer at a shelter.
- Give Blood.
- Mentor a child.
- Treat a friend to a mid-week movies.
- Give a huge tip to someone when they least expect it.
- Hold the elevator door open for someone on the shuttle.
- Give up your seat for someone.
- Talk to a homeless person and have a “normal” conversation.
- Pick up some trash around campus.
- Compliment a co-worker for their excellence.
- Babysit for a friend.
- Give another driver your parking spot.
- Donate to charity.
- Tell all your co-workers how much you appreciate them.
- Buy an inspirational book for a friend.
- Let someone go ahead of you in line at the SUB eateries.
- Do something nice for yourself.
- Smile a lot.
Health benefits of being kind
Numerous scientific studies show that acts of kindness result in significant health benefits, both physical and mental. Here are some key points:
- Helping contributes to the maintenance of good health, and it can diminish the effect of diseases and disorders serious and minor, psychological and physical.
- A rush of euphoria, followed by a longer period of calm, after performing a kind act is often referred to as a “helper’s high,” involving physical sensations and the release of the body's natural painkillers, the endorphins. This initial rush is then followed by a longer-lasting period of improved emotional well-being.
- Stress-related health problems improve after performing kind acts. Helping reverses feelings of depression, supplies social contact, and decreases feelings of hostility and isolation that can cause stress, overeating, ulcers, etc. A drop in stress may, for some people, decrease the constriction within the lungs that leads to asthma attacks.
- Helping can enhance our feelings of joyfulness, emotional resilience, and vigor, and can reduce the unhealthy sense of isolation.
- A decrease in both the intensity and the awareness of physical pain can occur.
- The incidence of attitudes, eg, chronic hostility, that negatively arouse and damage the body, is reduced.
- The health benefits and sense of well-being return for hours or even days whenever the helping act is remembered.
- An increased sense of self-worth, greater happiness, and optimism, as well as a decrease in feelings of helplessness and depression, is achieved.
- Once we establish an “affiliative connection” with someone—a relationship of friendship, love, or some sort of positive bonding—we feel emotions that can strengthen the immune system.
- Adopting an altruistic lifestyle is a critical component of mental health.
- The practice of caring for strangers translates to immense immune and healing benefits.
- Regular club attendance, volunteering, entertaining, or faith group attendance is the happiness equivalent of getting a college degree or more than doubling your income.
Stories of Kindness
Last year a few of you shared your stories of kindness with us. We would love to hear some more! Please email your story to Dorene DiNaro at firstname.lastname@example.org and look for them on this page at a later date!
Submitted by Dorene DiNaro
It has been all too common lately to hear stories portraying the Albuquerque Police Department in a less than favorable light. Therefore, I wanted to share a very positive experience I recently had with an Albuquerque Police Officer—a random act of kindness by a wonderful person made a little boy’s day and wanted nothing in return. To me, the following picture speaks for itself, but here is the story anyway.
My husband, our 3-year-old son and I were out for a walk with our dogs yesterday afternoon in our Albuquerque South Valley neighborhood. We saw a police officer who was out on a regular neighborhood patrol going in the opposite direction. My son pointed to the car and said to me, “Mama, there’s a wee-eww car!” He calls police cars “wee-eww” cars because that’s the sound their sirens make. The officer must have seen my son’s excitement and so he turned his car around so that he could pull up next to us.
The officer (whose name I didn’t get) rolled down his window and said to my husband and I, “I think I have some toys in here,” and proceeded to get out of his car with a bag full of toys. As you can see by the look on my son’s face, this was a wonderful experience for him and he gave the officer a big hug. Such a small act of kindness made my son’s day.
I think the world would be a far greater place, if we each made even the smallest effort to make someone else smile!
Dog Lover Gives Pooch A Good Home
Submitted by Heather Savage
I have always been huge dog lover and always donate to the ASPCA. I already had one 5 lb chihuahua at home, that I had had for a couple of years and was not looking for another dog. Before moving to New Mexico on one of my trips here to visit my parents, I heard about how a box of puppies had been left on their neighbors doorstep and how one of them had a broken paw that they could not afford to get fixed.Their neighbor ended up bringing the puppy over and she was the ugliest little thing you could imagine. She was skin and bones with all her ribs sticking out and was almost completely bald and had very dry skin and sores down her back, and she also had a crooked left front paw that she stood awkwardly on. She had the saddest eyes like the dogs on the ASPCA commercials, and was very fearful. As soon as I saw her I knew I had to take this poor puppy home. She rarely left my arms for the rest of my trip. I began rubbing aloe on her back and that helped with her dry skin and sores. I made arrangements to get her back to Connecticut with me. Once there I took her straight to the vet who was unable to fix her paw because it had already started healing and found out that her hair loss was from not eating regularly and would grow back once she was eating properly. She immediately took to my other chihuahua and loves having a big sister. She has never missed a meal again and her coat has come in a beautiful tan with a red stripe down the middle of her back and tail. She hasn't gotten any bigger than 3.5lbs and still has a crooked little paw but runs just fine. Her crooked little leg makes her look like a bull dog when she is standing there trying to look tough. She gives me kisses every night before we go to bed and shows me in some way almost every day how grateful she is to have a home. Rescue dogs are very special dogs. Unlike my older dog who has never known what it is like to be hungry, rescue dogs are grateful for any kindness and trust me they show it.
Paramedic Helps Patient in Need
I try to live by this rule as much as possible; what goes around, comes around. Leaving a nickel in the water bottle machine may help out the next person who is a nickel short, which we all know is a bummer. My biggest random acts have come from medicine. I became an paramedic so I could help others in need, in their worst moments. Lying on a steel gurney is a scary place to be, when people cannot, or refuse, to see you. One case sticks out from the others, in regards to this topic. During my ambulance time, I responded to a call in which a woman had hurt herself. Upon arriving on scene, I assessed the situation, and sent the crew to the hallway. My patient and I talked; I encouraged her to clean the bleeding wounds she had, then I bandaged them for her. I rode to UNMH with the transporting crew - I knew that ride would be about the last 20 normal minutes she would have for a while. We had a very easy going conversation, and when we arrived at the hospital, I stayed until she checked in. On the way out, she placed a hand on my shoulder, looked at me, and said thank you. Pay it forward, the golden rule, whatever you want to call it. Those who are strong have an obligation to help the weak.
A Pair of Gloves Makes a Big Difference
I stopped at Circle K one morning to get a soda and overheard a gentleman talking to the cashier (and I eventually got involved in the conversation). He said he stays at a shelter but they have to be out by a certain time each morning. He said he was standing outside a business after leaving the shelter a few days earlier and a man came up and started talking to him. He told the man about staying in the shelter and having to be out by a certain time each morning and that he didn't have gloves and his hands were so cold. The man opened the store and told him to follow him and took him to where the gloves were. He told him that he was the manager of the store and told him to pick out any pair he wanted. He said he picked out a pair of gloves and his hands are now warm when he is out in the cold. As we all talked he said how grateful he was to that manager. A pair of gloves seem like such a small thing, but to that gentleman it was the nicest thing anyone had ever done for him.
Food Warms the Heart
Submitted by Rachel Stone
Stefanie Rotunno is a person in my office who is always willing to listen to my stories and give advice. We were talking about cooking the other day, and I told her that I can NEVER get my pinto beans to turn out right. They are either to bland or too firm; I had given up. She then proclaimed that she makes THE best beans ever! She briefly told me what she does to make her beans sublime and I made a mental note. A couple of days later, Stefanie brought me some of her fantastic beans!!! And she was right, they were great! What a nice thing to do because that afternoon, I did not need to wonder what to have for lunch. Thank you, Stefanie!