kindness in action: a city-wide art project

The Kindness in Action City-Wide Art Project was conceived as a year-long participatory art and installation project designed to engage the community-at-large in hands-on collaborative art making, and encourage dialogue around kindness and nonviolent action in the community.  Our goal was to host art making workshops in locations throughout Evanston from January-December 2020 through partnerships with various Evanston programs.  We had identified 17+ different sites around the city, with multiple locations in all 9 wards in order to promote access and inclusion of all community members.  

The Kindness in Action City-Wide Art Project was conceived as a year-long participatory art and installation project designed to engage the community-at-large in hands-on collaborative art making, and encourage dialogue around kindness and nonviolent action in the community.  Our goal was to host art making workshops in locations throughout Evanston from January-December 2020 through partnerships with various Evanston programs.  We had identified 17+ different sites around the city, with multiple locations in all 9 wards in order to promote access and inclusion of all community members.

Our first workshop debuted at the kick-off event for the Year of Kindness and Non-Violent Action.  Over 150 Evanstonians of all ages and with diverse backgrounds participated in the Kindness in Action art project.  Witnessing the shared art making and community conversation was incredible.  We were also able host a workshop at Y.O.U. where 15 teens participated in the Kindness in Action art project.  

Check out photos from the kick-off event and a documentary film of the event created by ETHS freshman Sam Molitor.

kindness in action and covid-19

With the onset of the pandemic, art workshops designed to bring people together in the community to make art and engage in conversation were no longer possible.  We needed to shift gears and find ways to connect with people in the community and reinterpret kindness within the context of the pandemic.

We used social media outlets to document acts of kindness that were being carried out in the community and share them through facebook and instagram.  This online platform served as a virtual gallery of the art created in the workshops that took place at the beginning of the year and gave us an opportunity to spotlight the amazing acts of kindness and care that are happening in Evanston.

ideas for enacting kindness in the community: a resource for all ages

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Write positive sticky notes for someone and brighten their day!

Grab a stack of sticky notes and spend five minutes writing positive statements on them.  Then place the sticky notes anywhere that needs a little kindness like an office, a bus stop, a gas pump, a parked car, a hallway, or hidden places for people to find.

Here are a few phrases to get you started:

  • You know who's awesome?  Read that first word again.

  • Throw kindness around like glitter!

  • Hey, you're great.

  • One kind word can change someone's entire day.

  • Pssst... you're awesome!

Check out this and many more ideas for acts of kindness at

Random Acts of Kindness

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24 Awesome Ways To Encourage Being Kind at School

World Kindness Day is on Nov. 13 and Random Acts of Kindness Week is in February. But you can make kindness, empathy, inclusion, and acceptance an everyday thing. Here are some inspiring ideas you can bring to your school!

Get some ideas for great school activities at

PTO Today

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75 Random Acts of Kindness Ideas:

  • Hold the Elevator Door - This is an example of a very simple random act of kindness!

  • When your inside the elevator and see someone running for it, simply hold the door open for them.

  • Help Someone Put Groceries in Their Car

  • Let Someone Cut in Front of You in Line

  • Make and Send a Handmade Card - Rather than grabbing a random card off the shelf, be creative and send some handmade cards with personalized messages to your loved ones. Add inside jokes, cheerful notes and don’t forget to mention how much you love them. They will cherish the cards forever!

Get the full list at

Bucket List Journey

101 Easy Ideas For Random Acts Of Kindness

  1. Tweet or Facebook message a genuine compliment to three people right now

  2. Bring doughnuts (or a healthy treat, like cut-up fruit) to work

  3. While you're out, compliment a parent on how well-behaved their child is

  4. Don't write the angry internet comment you're thinking of writing

  5. When everyone around you is gossiping about someone, be the one to butt in with something nice

  6. Cook a meal or do a load of laundry for a friend who just had a baby or is going through a difficult time

  7. If you walk by a car with an expired parking meter, put a quarter in it

For the full list visit

BuzzFeed

100 Acts of Kindness for Kids

  • Put change in a vending machine

  • Hold the door open for someone

  • Do a chore for someone without them knowing

  • Return someone’s cart at the store

  • Give candy to your bank teller

  • Leave a letter in a library book

  • Feed the birds

  • Leave happy notes around town

  • Put a small bin in your car to collect recycling

  • Pick up litter

  • Let someone go ahead of you in line

  • Compliment a friend

  • Wash someone’s car

  • Write a thank you note for your mail carrier

Check out the full list at

Coffee Cups and Crayons

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Simple Acts of Kindness... for the Earth

These simple tips will help not only our planet but the creatures we share it with!

Upcycle boxes. You can use old shoeboxes as storage containers for photos or crafts, and empty cereal boxes can easily be made into magazine holders. Try using old boxes to ship things, or add a little imagination for some fun with the kids (big boxes can be used to make forts!). When we get creative and reuse items, it puts less strain on the planet!

Discover ways to be kind to our earth at

Mother Earth News

  • Kindness in Action
  • Kids Create Change