Have you ever had a bad day? One of those days when you crawl into bed at night you think to yourself “that was the worst day EVER!” I recently had one of those days. I felt as if I might, at any moment, be swallowed up by all of the ugly in this world. I knew then, that I had to create my own “light” at the end of the tunnel. The light came in the form of an idea for a community service project.
I read a story, shortly after my bad day, about a girl who decided to perform 26 random acts of kindness on her 26th birthday. I thought this was a fantastic idea, and vowed to do this on my own birthday. But my birthday was months away, and I wanted to do something now, and something BIG. Then I remembered the corporate days of service I participated in, back in the days when I worked at for-profit companies. Such days involved large groups of employees volunteering at a local non-profit for a day. A radical idea began to form:
Why couldn’t a non-profit do something similar?
We could go out into the community and perform random acts of kindness/service to the greater community! As you may already know, L’Arche will be celebrating their 38th birthday in April. So to celebrate 38 wonderful years, we will be performing 38 (or more) acts of kindness and/or service in the days leading up to our birthday.
Gandhi said: “be the change you want to see in the world.” I can’t think of many other organizations that exemplify this better than L’Arche. L’Arche is truly a model in deeds of kindness. For example, our Neighbours Helping Neighbours program provides services such as simple maintenance, lawn care, snow removal and other tasks to seniors and individuals with disabilities in our community – free of charge. Our Emmaus Day program also bakes cookies and hands them out to individuals in line at the food bank. There are countless kind deeds going on every day within the L’Arche community – now we are going to take it on the road and document it!
Over the next couple of months we will be posting blog updates featuring stories and photos of our acts of kindness (don’t forget to check back regularly for the updates). Please join us at the L’Arche 38th Anniversary Coffee House celebration on April 28th where we will celebrate our birthday and share photos and stories from our kind deeds. The celebration will be held at 6:30pm at the South Burnaby United Church Hall.
Submitted by Caitlin Toews, L’Arche Greater Vancouver