April marks a tradition at Country Meadows Retirement Communities: Practice Random Acts of Kindness.
While we practice kindness every day at Country Meadows, our co-workers and residents make special efforts to practice kind acts to honor our organization’s co-founder, Mary Jane Leader. Mrs. Leader was a daily example of kindness to others. She and her husband, the late Gov. George M. Leader, founded the organization upon treating people with kindness. And she inspired her family members and co-workers to do the same for others. Her birthday was in April, and we salute her memory by reminding everyone to brighten someone’s day through a random act of kindness. You may find it will brighten yours too.
At our York-South campus, co-workers and residents who exemplify kindness are gifted a kindness t-shirt and highlighted in a monthly “Kindness Corner” feature in a program newsletter.
“During the pandemic I watched our campus co-workers band together and make a collective decision that we were going to make it through together. And I saw so many positive and wonderful things happening every day,” says Becky Williams, Pathways Manager. “These multiple acts of kindness and compassion are happening every day, despite dealing with one of the greatest challenges of our lifetimes. We need to recognize all the gracious and kind acts taking place amidst the stress.”
This initiative inspired Country Meadows to create “Caught in the Act!” stickers for co-workers, residents and visitors at every campus to award each other when a kind act is observed. Additionally, co-workers and residents can share them outside our campuses to acknowledge kindness and encourage others to pass it on.
Random acts of kindness can be as simple as smiling at a stranger, helping someone with their groceries or just paying a visit. Acts of kindness aren’t about money or even planning. It’s about finding a moment to make a small difference in another person’s life.
Michael Leader, president & CEO-Country Meadows and founders’ son, says, “Every single day I am inspired by my co-workers when I see acts of kindness—big or small. Many times these kind gestures are done without thought, which speaks to the truly caring nature of our team. It reminds me of my parents’ compassion and what they instilled in my family and in turn, the Country Meadows culture.”’
Mrs. Leader’s big heart remains an inspiration to us all. Feel free to pass it on this month and every day thereafter.
“It has been our collective strength that got us through the COVID-19 pandemic,” says Williams. “And I’ve learned that kindness is truly a super power!”
If you would like to share an act you observed or one in which you practiced, please share it with us at Kindness@CountryMeadows.com. These inspiring stories are worth sharing!