Random Acts of Kindness
Congratulations to Katie Freadrich, winner of our Random Acts of Kindness draw!
Katie has been presented with her prize: a curated gift basket valued at $250 from Rural Root Collective. Rural Root Collective is a local purveyor of handmade items created by artisans in the Flagstaff Region and throughout the province.
For the last several weeks, we have been accepting submissions of random acts of kindness or uplifting stories for this page. Each submission earned an entry into our gift basket draw on June 5, 2020. Katie submitted the story about her friends, Scott and Stacey Walker, who started hosting Facebook Live Bingo on Friday nights.
Thank you to everyone who submitted random acts of kindness and uplifting stories!
There's a lot to worry about right now as we contend with COVID-19 – but amidst all the bad news, there are some good moments.
Enjoy the stories below and please remember, we're all in this together!
Paramedics Brighten Seniors' Day
Tara Sieben and Krysta Goodkey are both Primary Care Paramedics in Forestburg. Last week on their day off, both of these ladies hauled their horses to the Galahad Care Centre for the residents to see. While they intended to cheer up the residents by letting them see the horses through the windows, the residents came outside to see and pet them.
Everyone loves horses, and the residents were very happy to have them in the yard. For some it has been a long time since they have been this close to a horse.
Tara and Krysta enjoy spending time with the residents. The community is so very lucky to have these ladies living here.
– Kim Cannady
Delivering Flowers – and Spreading Kindness
(Pictured: Michelle Hebert and Barb Forster at Forster's Greenhouse.)
Michelle Hebert is no stranger to ‘acts of kindness’. Being kind and helping others out is a way of life for Michelle.
Prior to COVID-19, Michelle, along with Forster’s Greenhouse in Forestburg and Echoglen Gardens in Donalda, filled Michelle’s stock trailer full of flower pots following the Fort McMurray fires. She made six trips to Fort McMurray with her stock trailer full of flowers and delivered them to residents who were re-entering their homes.
Her kindness and generosity did not stop there. During COVID-19, Michelle was visiting with a friend who was missing her grandparents. Michelle herself, was missing her mom as well. With a giving heart, she decided this would be another great opportunity to brighten someone’s day by delivering flowers to them. After already working with the generous greenhouses, Forster’s Greenhouse and Echoglen Gardens, Michelle knew she would be able to rely on their generosity once again. She posted on Facebook ‘searching for donated planters’ and received an overwhelming outpouring of donations. Not only did she receive donated planters, she also received cash donations to go towards the cost of flowers. With the donated planters and cash donations, along with the help of the two greenhouses, friends and her family, Michelle delivered several pots to seniors (couples or widows) or anyone who needed their day brightened. A friend of Michelle’s delivered some of the pots to Heisler residents and told Michelle “it was so much fun.” Everyone who received a pot was so appreciative. Michelle said: “It got me in the feels.”
Kindness has a ripple effect. When we act kindly toward one person, that person is much more likely to be kinder toward others. Join people like Michelle and show kindness.
“A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees. The greatest work that kindness does to others is that it makes them kind themselves.” – Amelia Earhart, pilot
Frontline Hero Pays It Forward
Janice Bishop was the Week 2 contest winner of the “Nominate Your Frontline Hero” promotion. After hearing about her win, she decided to pay it forward. Each week, during the 5-week contest hosted by Flagstaff County, a random winner is drawn to receive a $50 gift card to a small business in the Flagstaff Region as a token of appreciation for the great work they are doing. It was Janice’s wish to receive a $50 gift card to the Co-op, which she then used to purchase food for the local food bank.
“I’ve been wanting to donate to the food bank for a while now and when I found out I won the contest, I decided it was the right thing to do. When you live in rural Alberta that’s what we do, we help each other out," says Janice.
Janice has made it her life mission to continually help others out, along with her community. She is part of several non-profit organizations in her community, including the Iron Creek Museum. You can also find her cutting grass and cleaning up around the Lougheed Trout Pond. Her “Random Acts of Kindness” go beyond helping out during COVID-19. Her gracious efforts are what make living in a small community so rewarding. Thank you, Janice.
Mask 'r Aid – Face Masks
As a massage therapist specializing in working with cancer and long-term care facility patients, Shirley Damberger is very familiar with the need to maintain and protect the health of our community's most vulnerable. When COVID-19 made it impossible to safely treat her clients in person, her and her mom Dorothy Wieschorster found a way to continue to support the health and safety of others. They started Mask 'r Aid, creating homemade masks with a portion of the proceeds going to the Flagstaff Food Bank where Dorothy has been a long-term volunteer. These masks have been sold in every province from BC to Ontario and some have even been sent as far away as Florida.
The team has also been busy sewing scrub bags, which have been donated to our community hospitals and long-term care facilities.
They strongly believe that we are truly all in this together, and now more than ever, it is so important to be kind and caring to one another.
Flagstaff Food Bank: 780-385-0810
Kindergarten to Grade 3 students at Killam Public School received surprise deliveries from their teachers (Traci Pedersen, Vanessa Borgel, Karin Brusse-Paterson and Jocelyn Miller).
(Pictured: Teachers Vanessa Borgel and Karin Bruss-Paterson set out with their deliveries.)
The response brought many tears to our eyes! Students were PUMPED!
We wanted to encourage our students and tell them how much we miss them after the government announcement that online learning would remain in effect until the end of this current school year. We tossed around the idea of a parade, but wanted to do something different, but still something that would be exciting and bring BIG joy to our babes.
No one knew we were coming. We prepared our notes, and treats and filled our vehicles and set out. We drove up to houses and knocked on the doors, put their treats on their steps and ran back to our cars and trucks and drove away. We wanted to keep the surprise intact. We received MANY texts, emails, and even were on the CISN Country Radio station out of Edmonton after a parent phoned in. Parents said it completely made their kiddos' day when they went to the door or came home to find a balloon, treat, and handwritten message from their teacher. They felt loved, missed and it just made them so happy... all the things we were going for.
– Jocelyn Miller, KPS Assistant Principal and Grade 3 teacher
KPS Art Walk
Killam Public School's annual Art Show may have been cancelled this year due to the pandemic, but you can still enjoy students' art work. The KPS Art Walk was launched May long weekend. Art pieces created by students this year are on display in the windows around the entire school until May 24. School administration and staff encourage you to go and admire the students' art work – while following social distancing rules, of course.
Killam appreciation messages
Killam Health Centre residents created these beautiful signs to send love to friends and family who may not be able to visit during COVID-19, and to thank staff who work so hard to care for them. Killam Health Centre staff helped organize the sign making after residents said they wanted a way to express their love, thanks and hope.
Friday Night Bingo
Hello! I’m nominating my good friends from Wainwright, Scott & Stacey Walker, who started hosting Facebook Live Bingo on Friday nights. At first it was just a few friends but by last week they had over 800 cards out! Their games have prizes, which were donated by them and others who participated, then hand-delivered that weekend to your door if you won! This was their time, money & gas just to give us something to look forward to during the week. My daughter was lucky enough to bingo twice and that smile on her face when she got her prizes was so uplifting in these times. This has gotten so big that CTV Saskatoon had them featured on their news last night. So out of appreciation for their kindness and hard work – they deserve to win. 😀
– Katie Freadrich
Good news from Isolation Island
Hi! Our 10-year-old daughter Kastyn is trying to make people smile each day. She has left snow messages on neighbours' lawns, sent mail to her friends, cousins and grandparents, and created Isolation Island in our living room. She FaceTimes people from her tropical escape and records videos for her grandparents.
– Jodi Campbell
First responders spread good cheer in Galahad
First responders Tara Sieben and Krista Goodkey post messages on the windows at the Galahad Care Centre.
During this time of unprecedented global anxiety, let us shift our mindset and enjoy a sampling of uplifting stories and moments found online.
- Killam appreciation messages, Killam Health Centre
- Killam RCMP surprise 8-Year-Old with 'Happy Birthday'
- Forestburg residents play music and clap for frontline workers
- #AlbertaCares on Twitter
- Water polo athlete builds backyard hay bale pool to train for Olympics
- 5-year-old Alberta girl selling her art to raise money for Nova Scotia Red Cross, RCMP
- Former Edmonton Eskimos offensive lineman using distillery to make sanitizer
- Horse visits spark happy memories for residents
- Mill Woods restaurant owner helps people in need with free meals
- Balcony workout: Local gym leads residents through physical distancing workout
- Red Deer’s Troubled Monk continues to sell and donate hand sanitizer to central Albertans
- Hundreds of Alberta quilters make scrub bags for health-care workers
- Young girl makes dolls to keep kids company during MRI, CT scans
- Masterminds behind Alberta's medical supplies surge to meet COVID-19 crisis
- Calgary high school students launch positive message hotline for seniors
- Airdrie company creates Alberta Cares merchandise inspired by Dr. Deena Hinshaw
- Smiley face window challenge goes worldwide
- Alberta Ghostbusters answering the COVID-19 call
- Okotoks teen 3D prints dozens of face shields for health-care workers
- Alberta RV dealer donates trailers to health-care workers needing to self-isolate away from families
- Loved ones serenade seniors outside care home
- First responders parade in Stony Plain
- First responders parade in Slave Lake
Beyond our Province
- Coquitlam company will be first in Canada to produce N95 respirators
- Nova Scotia grocery store workers use cash gift left for them to help seniors
- Saskatoon man, kids build dragon snow sculpture
- Batman helps Winnipeg kids fight off boredom
- Saskatchewan students learn about music to cure the isolation blues
- Nova Scotia kitchen party Facebook group goes global
- Langley teachers stage parade for students
- Window safari focused on bear necessities
- Seniors, care homes in Saskatchewan find new ways to connect
- Man uses bucket truck to "visit" mom on third floor of retirement home
- Golden retriever helps his owner deliver groceries to quarantined neighbour
- Grandfather and granddaughter have the sweetest socially distant dance-off
- Video of man visiting his wife with Alzheimer's during coronavirus outbreak goes viral
- People take to sidewalks with coloruful chalk to share messages of encouragement
- COVID-19 patient writes inspiring message on glass to caregivers
- Teen organizes #TikTokProm after hers gets canceled over coronavirus
- Police collect groceries, food for 95-year-old man