While we hunker down in our homes and stay safe by practicing social distancing, it can
sometimes be hard to know how to support those who are still working and saving lives and oftentimes, putting themselves at risk in order to help others. Here are 20 ideas on how you can say thank you, spread joy, and give back to the community — all from your own home! From chalk drawings to donating to local nonprofits, no act of kindness is too small these days. AND we’ve included a free printable for you at the end of this post with all of these ideas!
20 Random Acts of Kindness Ideas
1. Have you seen it? From teddy bears to rainbows, people have been putting adorable items in their windows for children and neighbors to find. You can also take photos of items in your community, then make a scavenger hunt game and pass it out in your neighbors’ mailboxes.
2. Chalk it up. Write inspirational chalk messages on your driveway. These are bound to cheer up walkers and runners who are exercising and getting fresh air.
3. Doggie delights. Bake homemade dog treats and drop them off to friends and neighbors who have pets. For some simple recipes, visit https://www.puppyleaks.com/pb-dog-treats.
4. Sign up. Make yard signs thanking all of the people who are still working during the crisis. From medical staff to grocery store clerks to delivery people, they all deserve an extra round of applause for putting themselves out there to help others.
5. Write away. Mail letters or postcards to family and friends who live alone or in a different state. Describe how you are surviving at home, tell a funny story, and let them know you are thinking about them.
6. Read all about it. Donate books to a local Little Free Library, or swap books with neighbors. Visit https://littlefreelibrary.org for more information and to find the little library closest to your house.
7. Film 101. Make a video of your kids thanking their teachers for all they do and post it on your school’s social media page or in Google classroom.
8. Feed friends. Order food from a local restaurant and have it delivered to your friends or co-workers. For example, Dockery’s on Daniel Island has a family-style meal that can be ordered online and provides free delivery to Mount Pleasant, Sullivan’s Island and Isle of Palms.
9. Support restaurants. Buy gift cards or merchandise from your favorite local eateries, order from online menus, or donate to their GoFundMe pages. Locally owned Home Team BBQ, for example, had to lay off all of its nearly 400 workers, so a GoFundMe page was created where all donations will go directly to employees in the form of gift cards to grocery stores and pharmacies.
10. Light it up. Decorate your yard with Christmas lights to brighten up your neighborhood at night.
11. Share the love. Like or share posts from your favorite local business on social media. It seems so easy, but any exposure that helps spread the word about their services is likely to be appreciated by hard-working small business owners.
12. Reach out. Text a friend and tell them how much you miss them or what you enjoy most about your friendship.
13. Grow goodness. Plant seeds of herbs or flowers in individual trays or small cups and when they start growing, share them with friends and neighbors. Or, support The Green Heart Project through their spring plant sale. Order plants online and all donations go toward the local organization that promotes garden-based education and school garden programs.
14. Help horses. Rein and Shine, a therapeutic riding facility in Awendaw that offers programs for adults and children with disabilities of all kinds, started a GoFundMe page for donations that will go toward feeding and caring for the horses that make this important service possible.
15. Can-do spirit. Take in your neighbor’s bins and cans on trash and recycling day.
16. Pledge your support. Lowcountry Local First provides a list of local independent businesses and information about how to give back through its website. Be sure to visit the nonprofit’s online CO-VID Business Resource Center.
17. Spread peace. Design a colorful Peace Flag out of a pillowcase and hang it outside (especially if you already have a flag holder).
18. Mailed It! Cut out hearts and write thank you, and tape the message to the inside of your mailbox as a way of thanking your local postal worker for delivering the mail.
19. Rock on. Paint rocks with kind messages and put them around your neighborhood.
20. Adopt a Grandparent. This campaign pairs volunteers with nursing home patients. Some of the ways you can help your new “grandparent” include having phone calls/video calls, sending photos (either by email or regular mail), sharing stories from different generations, or sending letters, much like a pen pal. Visit https://chdliving.co.uk/adopt-grandparent to fill out an application.
*A big thank you to my amazing mom friends Bayly Silverman, Rebecca Stephenson and Tessa Lisiecka, who are full of creative ideas about how to be kind and give back locally.