The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the grandest intention.
– Oscar Wilde
I know… that’s a bit to think about on a rainy Thursday when we all would just rather count the hours (minutes?) until the weekend arrives. Simply put, a small good deed is better than the greatest intentions. This quote becomes incredibly relevant for me at this time of year when I’m recruiting volunteers for the VITA (income tax assistance) sites at Goodwill. How do I turn great intentions into action? It’s easy to sit at my desk and think of all the wonderful things that would be nice in the world, and one question drives me to do what I do: how great would it be to end poverty? While the question can be overwhelming, one small act is all it takes to set positive change in motion. One tax return prepared by a volunteer can provide a family living in poverty with the means to live above the poverty level for a year. One hour can change a family’s year. How can we ignore the call to help? One small act is all it takes, and it’s not just right here with this program that we can help.
My sister recently wrote a post for City Year in Denver, Colorado http://www.cityyear.org/. The students there are in some of the worst situations, both in the home life and the school setting. Many of them don’t have warm jackets to wear in the winter, so they are unable to go out and brave the weather to take the public transit system to school each day. Wouldn’t it be nice to give them the tools they need to be successful? Not many people would argue with that, but who can step up to take action and help change the situation? A local clothing drive, or a donation of coats from Goodwill (picked up on a local dollar day sale at the store) can be a small act, but the outcome can have a profound ripple effect on the community. One coat can help one student get to class, which, down the road, can help them to pay it forward by taking charge of a failing education system. The people forgotten today are the ones who can change our tomorrow.
How will you turn your great intentions into great actions?
Resolve to end ___________. Do something.