Today is Random Acts of Kindness Day where all over the world, people do and share acts of kindness and inspire others to do the same.
While lockdown remains in place, doing something kind can be a great way of spreading a little happiness to those around us, as well as boosting our own wellbeing.
In recognition of this, we recently launched our Passports of Kindness project, which will see children at Edgewick and Broad Heath Primary Schools perform acts of kindness to fill up custom-made sticker books over the half-term break.
In that same spirit, we've pulled together some ideas for acts of kindness you can try out at home today and throughout the week.
Connect with family and friendsA lot of us have been physically apart from our friends and family for quite a while. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us that acts of kindness towards those you love are important, and they don’t have to be big gestures. Why not contact a family member or friend to talk about happy memories together, or text them ‘Good morning’ to brighten the start of their day?
VolunteerWhile many traditional, in-person volunteering opportunities might be off the cards in lockdown, there are still plenty of charities you can help to support remotely.
Our top tip for Random Acts of Kindness day is Kissing It Better, a Warwickshire-based charity that is helping to combat loneliness among older people. As well as organising Zoom sessions with care home residents, Kissing it Better is also encouraging people to send them cards and pictures that they can distribute to those at risk of isolation. Find out more about how you can get involved on the Kissing it Better website.
Send something in the postThe Zoom fatigue struggle is real! Writing letters or postcards is a great way to keep in touch with loved ones without adding to their screen time. Plus, setting time aside to read a letter away from distractions can help to break up the day. A handwritten letter or small gift can feel like a really personal touch when you know that someone's been feeling down.
Build workplace relationshipsWith working from home now part of the ‘new normal’, maintaining and making new friendships with your colleagues can be challenging. We have adapted our working style and our communication to one another needs to keep up too.
The good news is you don’t have to bring in coffee or baked goods any more, but little things like sending a ‘thank you’ email to a colleague or letting them know that you appreciate the work they do can make a big difference. Or if you fancy doing something a bit bigger, why not try and organise a digital work quiz or social on a Friday evening or lunchtime?
Make someone feel valuedIf you know someone who has been doing amazing things for others recently, you could pay it back by nominating them to be recognised for their work.
Our 2021 Club members Wright Hassall are currently calling for nominations for their 175 Acts of Kindness initiative. To celebrate their 175th birthday, they'll be recognising the work of one amazing Coventrian each month, awarding them £175 to donate to a charity of their choice. At the end of the year, one person will be given a massive £1175 to donate. Head to their website to make a nomination.
If you know an amazing Coventry woman, you can also show your appreciation for her by putting her forward as one of our modern-day Lady Godivas. We're looking for women who are continuing Godiva's legacy in Coventry today by embodying her activist spirit. Nominate a Lady Godiva here.
Be kind to the environmentKindness doesn’t just apply to people – it can also apply to our planet. You might already be recycling, but are you sure you are doing it properly? For example, did you know you can’t recycle pizza boxes?
The Recycling Club in Coventry is full of useful information about what you can and cannot recycle and also offers prizes for recycling.
Donate if you canNot everyone is able to donate money, but if you do have cash to spare, there are numerous local charities in real need of donations, many having been hit hard by the pandemic and lockdown.
If you'd prefer to donate goods rather than money, you could add a few items into the donation bin at your local supermarket, or drop them off at a collection point near you. The Coventry Foodbank website has lots of useful information about where to find collection points across the city.
The Love Coventry website also has some handy tips about how to donate other household items such as clothes and shoes.
Help out in your communityOver the last few months, we've all seen how the pandemic has affected people differently, so it's a good idea to check in with family, friends and neighbours to see how you can support each other.
There may be someone close to you who is shielding and needs help getting shopping, or perhaps someone who is less confident with technology could benefit from regular check-ins over the phone.
Even if they don't need help right now, it's always good to have a support network in place, so you know who you can ask for support if your situation changes.
If you'd like to volunteer to help the wider Coventry community, you can find out more on the Coventry City Council website.
Feeling inspired? Let us know about the acts of kindness you've been doing by tweeting us @Coventry2021 or tagging @Coventry2021 in your pictures on Instagram.