SON Faculty and Staff Spread Kindness with “The Kindness Crew”

In November 2019, Linda R. Roberts, SON PhD Division & Program Manager, ​and other UNC faculty and staff, joined to pay tribute to her husband Chuck, and others by exhibiting kindness every day. Linda says that joining was intended to serve as a gentle reminder to her, and anyone desiring to reflect, how one single act of kindness can generate a positive and lasting impact.

To pay it forward, Linda approached Dr. Shielda Rodgers, to request assistance from the UNC SON Office of Inclusive Excellence, to launch her inaugural Kindness Initiative 2020, in recognition of National Random Act of Kindness Day, February 17th.

Collaboratively, Linda, Dr. Rodgers, Chasity Mims, Gabrielle Carter, and Kay Thompson created a kindness team, which Sam Deal affectionately renamed The Kindness Crew. Together the crew began the project by designing a kindness poster, ordering light blue candied roses, and attaching beautifully bright, heartwarming quotes to the stems. The crew also decorated the diversity and inclusion cart, filling it with snacks, fruit, and water to share with their colleagues on Monday, February 17th, celebrating National Random Act of Kindness Day. Gratefully, due to the generosity of Dr. Cheryl Giscombe, LeVine Family Distinguished Associate Professor of Quality of Life, Health Promotion, and Wellness, The Kindness Crew was also able to randomly donate 12 chair massages to lucky winners whose rose had a massage emblem labeled on the back of their kindness quote. Based on feedback, the event was a huge success. Several rose recipients commented on how deeply they were moved, and expressed sincere appreciation, for the random act of kindness.

In addition to serving their UNC SON colleagues, with the permission of principal Kathryn J. Hutchinson, Linda also suggested The Kindness Crew adopt Centennial Campus Magnet Middle School in Raleigh. The goal was to promote community relationship building by honoring teachers like Linda’s sister Lori Glasco, and all teachers, who sacrifice and serve the children in our communities everyday. The Kindness Crew delivered a kindness poster and chocolate heart candies attached with kindness quotes to place in teachers’ mailboxes. Joyously, through the continued generosity of Jamy McGee, Assistant Director, UNC Wellness Centers’ Donation Outreach program, The Kindness Crew was able to donate five table massages to the winners of the schools Random Act of Kindness drawing.

A sincere thank you to all who participated.

“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou