Kindness Week spread across the University of North Carolina Wilmington’s campus on Mar. 17-20. The week was sponsored by UNCW’s Counseling Center, Campus Recreation, Paws4People and CARE, an on-campus resource that helps victimized students.
Each day comprised of different events, from an informational Lemonade Stands that informed students of ways to “Stand Against Violence” to Mindful Yoga in the recreation center, all with one purpose: to bring kindness to the student body.
“The program was focused on spreading kindness, inspiring the students and bringing a brightness to campus that can sometimes be bogged down by exams and papers,” says junior and nursing major, Delanie Dyer. As a Peer Educator through CARE, Dyer coordinated Kindness Week.
“By being accepting and kind, we can make our campus a place of inclusion and collaboration for everyone,” says Dyer.
Paper bags were sitting on tables in the student union for students to pick up. Inside was a variety of items, including candy, granola bar and informational material. A motivational quote was written on the bag itself.
“So far this week our students loved the CARE packages we made,” said Delanie Dyer. “We put together brown paper bags and inside we put gummies, granola bars, stress reducing tea, Kindness coins, toys with smiley faces on them, inspirational quotes and bubbles. We thought it was a great way to start off a Monday.”
Dogs were brought to campus on another day through the a local organization, Paws4People. The purpose was to bring healing to people through the love of Assistance Dogs.
Throughout the week, Self-CARE was promoted among students, encouraging him or her to be kind to themselves, too. Local venues provide cheap events for students to attend, including $1 bowling at a local alley, $5 Zumba classes at the Wilmington School of Ballet, and free tours at a local garden and museum.
“Students in particular can become so stressed and forget about their own physical and mental health, so this day was in place to remind our students to be kind to themselves, so they can build their self confidence and happiness,” says Dyer.
Kindness Week seems reminiscent of Random Acts of Kindness (RAK) Week, which was Feb. 10-15 this year, hosted by the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation.
Kindness is contagious, as more universities are starting RAK Clubs and Organizations, including Louisiana State University, Florida State University and Boise State University.
Whether a club is formed, or a university is hosts an event, like Kindness Week, a love of self and a love for others is growing among college students.
“I hope that from kindness week everyone can learn how important a small act of kindness can be, and how far that small act really goes,” Dyer says.