Day of Hope – April 4th, 2018

Today April 4th, 2018 is the Day of Hope and in honour of this day we felt that it was important to highlight some amazing organizations doing good in the world, and these are only a short list of SO many of them that exist right now.

Attempting to make the world a happier place for my children and girl-crush Kristen Bell might seem like completely random and totally unrelated topics, but as of recently, they’ve become two things I’m pretty obsessed with. You see, Kristen Bell is using her voice to share the Good Four’s initiative and intentions, and since stumbling upon their message through her Instagram account, I’ve hopped on board without hesitation. And now I’m asking all of you to hope on board too!

Let me explain – the Good Four initiative is a national movement encouraging anyone, anywhere, to spend four hours on April 4th doing some good. Really? That’s it? Yup! It’s that simple and it’s that easy. It’s an attempt to encourage everyone to seek out an opportunity within their community to donate four hours of their time within a cause, charity, or act of kindness of their choosing. It’s an attempt to inspire others, inspire yourself, and inspire a movement. There really isn’t an excuse not to join in. You can check out Kristen Bell’s video {here} and to read more about Good Four’s mission.

Today, April 4th, is the second year Good Four is encouraging us all to do better and spread the good, and I want to encourage you to join in with me. Some of my favourite ideas to give back and do better on April 4th are super simple and include volunteering time at a local humane society or walking dogs who have yet to find their forever homes.  Spending time within the kids’ classrooms and schools, offering assistance at nearby animal sanctuaries, pitching in at a local shelter, donating time at the local library reading stories to children, helping out at our community’s food bank, and simply cleaning up at our favourite park or a neglected area of our neighbourhood. Or, as Kristen Bell herself suggests, “Just spend four hours being less of an a-hole!” Remember, this is about doing good while doing what you love, so it’s totally up to you!

But Good Four is also striving to inspire goodness that isn’t limited to just one day and I think that might be what truly resonates with me the most. As a mom, I hope that I’m continuously modelling positive behavior for both of my kids and that they are watching, learning from, and absorbing the acts of kindness and good they see us leading by example with. I really want you to encourage you to get involved for the Day of Hope. But I think what I want the most for all of us, and specifically for my own family, is to do a better and more consistent job of spreading goodness all the time, each and every day. There are so many simple and manageable ways that we could each keep help the Good Four momentum moving forward so I want to share how we plan to commit as a family, including Ella and Noah!  

  • Since I’m always in the kitchen cooking for our family, I’m going to be more mindful of who in our community could use a home cooked meal. Whether a friend with a new baby, an elderly neighbour, or someone in our community struggling with illness, sharing homemade meals from our kitchen is an easy way to spread kindness.
  • We recently purchased limited edition water bottles from Brita® for a great cause. Since September 2016, Brita Canada has been working tirelessly with ME to WE to drill a borehole and provide clean water to 55,400 people in Irkaat, Kenya. TheFilter for Good™ initiative is about sustainable change, not short-term solutions. Brita® Canada is continuing their partnership with WE on a sustainable change initiative. WE is a movement that brings people together and gives them the tools to change the world. The campaign supports a borehole in Irkaat, Kenya that provides the community of more than 1,800 with access to clean water. Every purchase of a Brita ME to WE statement bottle or specially marked product will provide a year’s supply of clean water to a person in Irkaat, Kenya.
  • When we’re short on time and can’t physically pitch in at the local food bank, the kids and I will add additional items into our grocery cart that we can personally deliver or add to collection bins. Most food banks will post on their websites what items they are in need of, so be sure to look into those requests.
  • Similarly to local food banks, the humane society and animal shelters typically share what they’re in need of. Often there are things you can purchase like specific cleaning products or pet foods, but also items like old towels and blankets that you may already have around the house. You know we love our furry friends!
  • I plan on putting together a basket of non-perishable school-safe snacks like apple sauce, fruit purees, granola bars, and oatmeal that Ella can donate to her classroom. If ever a student doesn’t have enough food in their lunch box, these snacks will be on hand for Ella’s teacher to distribute as necessary.
  • The kids love to create artwork and we can’t possibly keep all of it. I think Ella and Noah would each be happy to share their paintings and drawings with hospital patients or residents of a long-term care facility.

I hope you’ll feel inclined to join me in trying to spark happiness, encourage kindness, and do more good. Never under estimate how impactful and contagious these small efforts could be – leave a happy note somewhere in the community, pay for someone’s coffee the next time you’re in the drive-thru, or smile at a stranger.

The world needs more good. And let’s not forget, the next generation is watching.

(Now who wants to pick up litter on a double date with Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard? Um, me please!)

Images sourced via the