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Committing 211 Acts of Kindness for 2-1-1 Day

The staff of a 2-1-1 center in Maryland is celebrating February 11th (known as 2-1-1 Day) by encouraging people to display random acts of kindness and generosity toward one another.

This is the second annual event of its kind for 2-1-1 Maryland. Last year the organization representatives decided that the best way to spread the word about 2-1-1’s free information and referral services was to challenge the community to commit a combined two hundred eleven random acts of kindness and then share their acts via social media. The event was so successful it was destined to become an annual tradition. They encourage people to participate with three steps:

  • Act: Commit a random act of kindness on February 11th
  • Inspire: Share what you did by posting to the Facebook event page using #211ActsofKindness
  • Challenge: Invite others to the event in person or online, or share the printable social media cards to get family, friends, and coworkers started on completing their own random acts of kindness

As of Wednesday, the Facebook event has over 600 people planning to participate. Some have even shared their plans for acts of kindness, or acts they’ve already committed in honor of the event. One woman said she’d been sending inspirational postcards to a friend who has been going through a difficult time. A local student posted a video of her teacher encouraging another student.

The staff of 2-1-1 aren’t just encouraging others to be kind; they’re getting in on the kindness action themselves.

For their first act of kindness they will be offering a light breakfast of coffee and baked goods at their Kindness Challenge kick off locations. One location will also offer free chair massages to employees of the local agencies served by the United Way. Another location will offer facility tours and information on why Mental Health Matters. For the remainder of the day, a “Kindness Crew” of 2-1-1 Maryland staff members and partner organizations will be out in the community performing random acts of kindness and encouraging others to do the same.

And even though the organization that operates 2-1-1 in western Maryland, the Mental Health Association of Frederick County, could benefit from donations and fundraising for their own programs, they’re instead accepting donations on behalf of two local agencies on Thursday. They’ll accept needed items for two local domestic violence shelters such as diapers, feminine products, and toiletries.

For more information on this event, visit the Facebook page.

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Dana joined the iCarol team in 2013 after 12 years of direct service and administrative duties at a blended 2-1-1/crisis intervention/suicide prevention center. As the Communications and Social Media Manager at iCarol, you'll find her presenting Webinars, Tweeting, Blogging, Facebooking, and producing other materials that aid helplines in their work.

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