Random Acts of Kindness Week is celebrated from February 12th through February 18th this year, and Random Acts of Kindness Day falls on Friday, February 17th.

In thinking about random act of kindness, my initial thought process went to my older brother, Tommy. Ironically, Tommy turns 27 the day before Random Acts of Kindness Day. Even more ironically, when Tommy was born with cerebral palsy almost 27 years ago, the doctors informed my parents that he would not live to see his second birthday.

When I think of kindness, true random acts of kindness, my first thoughts are of Tommy.

I play many sports along with my two other brothers, Danny and Jack. At each of those sporting events, we can always find our biggest fan cheering us on from the stands.

One of Tommy’s favorite things to do is have people shake hands. We say he is on a world peace gig as he has anyone and everyone shake hands. While we are on the field or court, Tommy is in the stands introducing our teammates’ parents to the opposing team’s supporters. All with a simple handshake followed by a smile and belly laugh from my big brother.

Since I started working at JMF last summer, I have had the opportunity to witness many random acts of kindness. I have seen students offer to help a classmate write his or her name in Braille; JMFitness mentors give time, talent, and love to athletes of all abilities; business groups schedule Service Days to help within the community; coworkers listen to my hopes and fears; eighth grade students commit to being upstanders; and so much more.

Kindness abounds at JMF.

We challenge you to engage in one random act of kindness each day this week. It can be as simple as a handshake or smile, or as elaborate as picking up the bill for a stranger behind you at Starbucks.

Need ideas for our challenge? Check out the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation. With kindness ideas specific for strangers, at school, to protect the environment, and everything in between, there are countless ideas to help turn the world kind.

So, again, in a world where you can be anything, be kind. This week. Every week.

With a handshake and a smile,


Post written by: Molly Shawhan, Communications Director