Friday 13 November marks the international day of celebrating kindness.
Created to promote being kind to others, it highlights the importance and impact of kindness within and towards other communities.
Coronavirus has showcased the very best of people in tragic circumstances, as the nation stood in solidarity with NHS workers by taking part in ‘clap for carers’ across 10 weeks of lockdown.
Kindness also featured heavily on the placards of Black Lives Matter protesters.
Replicas of an American yard sign which read “In this house we believe, Black Lives Matter. Women’s rights are human rights. No human is illegal. Science is real. Love is love. Kindness is everything” sold out at the peak of the protests, on Amazon.
As lockdown restrictions continue in many places, and coronavirus cases persist, kindness will continue to be important to overcoming the challenges that 2020 throws our way.
Here’s what you need to know about why we celebrate the World Kindness Day- and simple things you can do to make someone’s day.
When did World Kindness Day start?
The World Kindness Movement began in 1998 with the joining up of several countries’ non-government kindness organisations (NGOs).
In the UK it is led by entrepreneur David Jamilly, who co-founded Kindness Day UK with writer and humanitarian Louise Burfitt-Dons.
Kindness is celebrated annually on November 13 by countries such as the UK, America, Japan, Australia, Italy and Canada.
What is the theme of this year’s World Kindness Day 2020?
This year, World Kindness Day will celebrate empathy as its annual theme.
Empathy is defined as the ability to understand and share the feelings of another, and this year’s theme highlights the importance of being kind and considerate towards people of other religions, genders, race and economic communities.
How can I practice kindness?
The purpose of the day is not to prove how kind you are, but to be kind in your actions and be more aware of your kindness - such as giving someone a compliment.
You can start small by donating to charity, or helping out with household chores. Perhaps it’s the perfect opportunity to finish that DIY job your partner has been nagging about since lockdown began?
In recent years, countries have acknowledged the movement with concerts and dance mobs, however 2020 has proven difficult for events to take place given widespread coronavirus restrictions.
Instead, sending flowers, a card or text to your loved one or neighbours to let them know that you are there for them would be a kind idea.
10 of our favourite kindness quotes:
Here are a few of the best quotes, reminding you to be kind to yourself and others:
‘Where there is kindness there is goodness, where there is goodness there is magic” - Cinderella.
“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better, it’s not.” - Dr Seuss
“I’ve been searching for ways to heal myself and I have found that kindness is the best way” - Lady Gaga
“Kind words can be short and sweet but their echoes can be truly endless” - Mother Teresa
“Be kind wherever possible, it is always possible “- Dalai Lama
“In a gentle way, you can shake the world” - Mahatma Gandhi
“The ideas which has lightened my way and time after time given me new courage to face life cheerfully has been kindness, beauty and truth” - Albert Einstein
“Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see” - Mark Twain
“What wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness?” - Jean Jaques Rousseau
“In a world where you can be anything, be kind” - Caroline Flack