World Kindness Day

On Saturday, November 13, people around the world will celebrate World Kindness Day. World Kindness Day was founded in 1998 by the World Kindness Movement (WKM) with the pledge to “join together to build a kinder and more compassionate world.”

Since the launch, this day has been celebrated in Australia, China, France, Italy, Korea, Malaysia, and the United States. In 2019, WKM gained official legal Non-Governmental Organization status in Switzerland.

WHY IS KINDNESS GOOD FOR YOU?

Research has revealed doing one random act of kindness daily will make you happier, calmer, and live longer. When you do an act of kindness for someone else, your body produces chemicals that reduce pain, blood pressure, stress, and anxiety. Being nice to others is a feel-good medicine.

RESOURCES

You know how good it feels when someone says something nice to you or does something kind for you. Healthy Native Youths offers a text service where recipients, youth 13 – 24, can receive two texts weekly “designed to improve your mood and remind you how awesome you are.” Text “CARING’’ to 65664 to sign-up.

The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation has activities designed to be done at home with family members. Visit https://www.randomactsofkindness.org/ to download the 24 weekly lessons sent directly to your e-mail.

WHAT YOU CAN DO TO MAKE SOMEONE’S DAY

Here are some ideas for you to make someone’s day with a random act of kindness. If it makes you feel good plan to do one random act of kindness each day. Build this habit into your life so you can bring joy to others in your community.

IDEA # 1 – Make a Dinner for an Elder. Ask your family to work with you to make and deliver a meal for an Elder that lives near you. Be sure to ask if they have any foods they can’t eat.

IDEA # 2 – Make a Gift for Someone You Love. Whether a friend or family member, making someone an unexpected gift.

IDEA # 3 – Give a Letter to a Friend. Getting a letter from a friend is one of the best gifts one can give especially if it is unexpected. Let your friend know why they are special and why you appreciate them.

IDEA # 4 – Make a Nature Basket. Grab a cup or something reusable and collect natural objects that make you happy or grateful for something. This is a fun activity to do with a friend or family member too.

IDEA # 5 – Create a Card for a Teacher or Coach. Make a homemade card for your teacher or coach. Thank them for all they do for you.

KINDNESS IS CONTAGIOUS

As your random acts of kindness reach others and you achieve six degrees of kindness, you might notice that other community members are also doing random acts of kindness. It only takes one person to get kindness moving forward.

CAMP FIRE SPARK

Camp Fire Alaska will be writing a weekly article featuring ideas and activities for youth, teens, and families to do together. Let us know what you will do for others on World Kindness Day. Send us details at [email protected] and use the hashtags #WorldKindnessDay and #CampFireAlaskaSpark in your social posts.

Joe Slowinski, Camp Fire Alaska

Anchorage, AK

BBB Tips: Don’t Let Shortages Spoil Your Holiday Shopping

If you’re waiting until Black Friday to start your holiday shopping, there may not be much left. Snags in the supply chain are expected to make popular gifts harder to come by this year. The COVID-19 pandemic has created shortages in essential items needed to make many of the products that typically fill holiday wish lists. Purchasing the perfect present may require some faster, proactive action.

The microchip scarcity, for example, has made it more difficult to connect with high-demand tech products such as gaming systems, computers, and smart appliances. Toys that feature light, sound, and motion may be harder to find, too.

Retailers have taken notice, and as a result, holiday promotions are popping up earlier than ever. But even if you are seeing those deals sooner, there may not be as many. Businesses have less incentive to place items on sale when inventory is running low. Retailers are also having to pay more than usual for inventory making it harder to offer the same bargains they did last year. In fact, you may face escalating prices as supplies become depleted.

Shortages don’t have to ruin your holidays, though. Getting all the right gifts for your friends and family is still an achievable goal. It may just require faster action and added flexibility.

Better Business Bureau recommends taking these steps as you get a jumpstart on holiday shopping:

•Start with a strategy. Identify the gifts you think may be more popular this holiday season and target those items first. If laptops, gaming consoles, or smart devices are products your family wants this year, then it’s time to get moving. Supply chain issues have already made some items unavailable until next year.

•Set a budget. Expect the prices of some gifts to skyrocket. Retailers have had to pay more to offer some items, so they may not be extending deals to customers. Establishing a budget may help corral your spending amidst some crazy costs. This may even be a good year to consider purchasing fewer presents.

•Build a backup plan. Getting what you want when you want and at the price you want is likely not going to happen this winter. Not easily, anyway. So, try to adjust your expectations and come up with some alternatives should things not play out like you hope. If you know a microchip shortage has made some items scarcer than usual, then shop for gifts that are less likely to be impacted. Outdoor toys, for example, should remain in stock at affordable prices.

•Be a cautious customer. High demand and limited supplies are perfect conditions for customers to be taken advantage of. It’s important to remember that when a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Counterfeit goods are expected to be more common this year, too. Check out these tips to help you become a smarter consumer.

•Shop local. This will be a great year to visit small businesses in your area! Handcrafted goods are perfect last-minute gifts to help support your local community.

Researching vendors you’re unfamiliar with is the best way to make sure you’re doing business with a legitimate retailer. Use trusted websites, including BBB.org. For more consumer tips, visit trust-bbb.org.

Roseann Freitas

Better Business Bureau

Great West + Pacific

Example: 9075434113

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