By Aaron Worley
MATTHEWS – Primrose School of Austin Village has set golden standards for empathy and kindness with its supply drive.
From Sept. 18 to 24, the preschool collected donations of water, blankets, pillows and other miscellaneous supplies to help Hurricane Florence victims in Swansboro.
This was part of a collaborative effort with the Rachel’s Kindness Matters Movement. The movement, a subsidiary of Kindness Matters, teaches children and others the importance of showing compassion for the less fortunate.
It was founded in late 2017 and takes its title from a senior killed in a car accident. Cynthia Schick, the mother of the girl, is a driving force behind the movement.
Flyers were made illustrating what items were needed. These were then passed through middle schools, neighborhoods and other facilities. Schick later spotted an opportunity to more closely give back to the community.
When she passed out information about the plan, a couple of her neighbors reached out to her and let her know they were willing to help. They offered space for donations, as well as word-of-mouth that Schick was accepting any supplies people could give. This sparked a chain of donations throughout the area, showing how people can make such a huge impact on strangers’ lives if they work together.
Jennifer Dennis, one of the main organizers for Primrose, said she was overwhelmed by the support and community effort she received. Dennis believes children can be taught the lesson of giving without expecting anything in return at any age.
“It starts when they’re little,” Dennis said. “If you start now, imagine what wonderful people they will continue to be.”
Goals of the Kindness Movement include creating a more empathetic culture for students and children and helping them understand the needs of their community. It also hopes to bring awareness to charitable organizations.
Schick and other moms have a plan of bringing exposure of the movement to many schools across the state. She believes that negativity in this current climate is toxic and can be overtaken with positivity and gentleness if people make the effort to change.