Making a difference, one dollar at a time

March 1, 2016By Acts of Kindness, Behind the Shelf Blog, Random Acts of Kindness blog series

by Dawn Vogelsang, president, for our Random Acts of Kindness blog series

Each year my company seeks input from the associates regarding charities that we should support. Early in 2015, someone suggested performing random acts of kindness as something we should consider. In November, we decided to give it a shot. An email was sent to all HRG associates asking if they would like to participate. Over half answered the call. The company gave each participant 30 one-dollar bills with the mission to distribute them however they saw fit.

Now, I have always said we have amazing, caring, generous people working here, but the results of this Random Acts of Kindness Challenge blew me away! At a time when so much negativity, violence, and hatred is in the news, these individuals were able to, one dollar at a time, offer strangers a different view of what this world is about and touch many, many lives in the process.

I could go on and on, but I’ll highlight a few things that touched me the most:

1) Personal interactions: this world can be a scary place, and yet our associates set fear aside and engaged with those they might have otherwise avoided.

2) The gift of time: we are all so busy, especially around the holidays, and yet our employees stopped and talked to those that looked lonely, in need of assistance, or could use a bright spot in their day.

3) Individual gifts: not only did our associates deliver on their promise with the dollars the company contributed, they added to it with their own money.

Over the next few months, you’ll see posts from some of the participants describing their stories in more detail, so I won’t spoil that by giving any particular examples of what I’ve described above.

Here are a couple of things I did with my $30.00. While at the mall I approached a family and gave them money to rent the toy cars for their three sons. My husband and I also contributed to a Salvation Army Red Kettle where three young men were volunteering. In talking to them we learned they were high school students and had been volunteering together for about 7 years. It was refreshing to see these young men making a statement by making a difference.

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