by Kathy Hagen, data assets specialist, or our Random Acts of Kindness blog series

We have an internal newsletter and in every issue an associate is interviewed. One of the questions is, “If you could have a super power, what would it be?” My answer was “invisibility” because then I could help people without them knowing. That’s just what I decided to do for the Random Acts of Kindness Challenge last year.

Although people are always grateful when they receive a random act of kindness, it can also embarrass some. That’s why I made conscious choices to use my $35 in ways that were anonymous. Following are my favorite opportunities.

My husband and I were out to dinner one night with friends and while the restaurant was full when we got there, by the time we were finishing, there was only one other group in the whole place. Turns out, there happened to be a Wisconsin Badgers football game that started while we were dining. I realized our server wouldn’t get what she might on a normal night in tips, so after we paid the bill and included the tip, I decided to double the tip and hid the additional amount on the table for her to find after we had left. I hope that helped her out.Christmas books

The next opportunity I had felt just as good. My mom’s friend lives in an apartment complex for senior citizens. They have a small library and I put some dollar bills in the Christmas books thinking they would be popular at that time of year and hoping the money would be discovered by residents sooner rather than later. I knew it would be useful in helping them pay for the washers and dryers, as well as to pay for cab rides to the drug store, grocery store, etc.

My last act for the Challenge presented itself when I was at a local mall. That day, the local police and firefighters were manning the Salvation Army’s Red Kettles. One of the men had brought their young daughter and she was enthusiastically ringing the bell. I decided to put some money in her kettle and it must have been one of the higher donations she had received thus far, because she was very excited and appreciative. I think I may have made her day.

I’m so grateful HRG gives us this opportunity. In many ways, I think it does more for those of us giving than those that are receiving.

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