Students will join nearly 17 million youth in 115 countries to create a kinder world.

SANTA CLARA, NM – The world can use some extra kindness right now and Central Elementary School (CES) is going to deliver! CES will participate in the 11h annual Great Kindness Challenge the week of  January 24 - 27, 2022 and they enthusiastically invite our entire community to join in and cheer them on.

The Great Kindness Challenge, presented by the global nonprofit Kids for Peace, was launched with three Carlsbad, California schools in 2012 to address bullying and to foster connection, inclusion and compassion. The annual program has multiplied in enrollment each year, having grown to nearly 17 million students in 33,000 schools, reaching across all 50 states and 115 countries. 

Jill McManigal, co-founder and executive director of Kids for Peace, explains, “We are living through a global pandemic which is hugely impacting our families, students, communities and the world. We are truly grateful for all educators who not only ensure safe school environments but are also committed to creating school cultures that promote equity, community, empathy and social-emotional wellness. The Great Kindness Challenge provides educators and students the tools, opportunity and encouragement to actively create a positive, respectful and inclusive school culture for all.”

Schools and students are drawn to the program for its positive and proactive approach to creating kinder school climates through a simple checklist of intentional acts of kindness. The checklist will be distributed to students at the beginning of The Great Kindness Challenge week. Students will be encouraged to complete each kind act over the course of the week, as well as take part in additional community-building events and global service projects. CES will amplify the experience by having a Community Kindness Tunnel on Monday, January 24, where various members of the community will be invited to come and give students kind and encouraging words, as they are being dropped off for school.  Other activities will include spirit days, writing kind messages to hand out to various community groups, decorating the school with kind words, posters, and art work.  

According to Judy Cruz, school counselor, “We are trying to inspire kindness at a time that our kids need it the most.  The pandemic has taken its toll on everyone.  We all should practice being kind to one another.”

While the excitement of The Great Kindness Challenge is enormous, it is the simple acts of kindness that prove to be the biggest hit. Some of the items on the checklist are: wave at 25 people, help your teacher with a needed task, read a book to a younger student and safely sit with a new group of kids at lunch. Big or small, every act of kindness makes a difference. 

Let’s all help make a positive difference. Let’s join together, lift each other up, cheer each other on and do our part to create a kinder Santa Clara and a more compassionate world.

About The Great Kindness Challenge 

The Great Kindness Challenge is a positive and uplifting program that creates a culture of kindness in schools, communities and the world. Using a kindness checklist, schools and families are challenged to complete as many acts of kindness as possible. The School Edition is an annual one-week celebration during the last week of January. The Family Edition is year-round. Schools and families may get involved by signing up at no cost: http://greatkindnesschallenge.org. The Great Kindness Challenge is made possible by the generosity of our sponsors: ViaSat, Nordson and McGraw Hill Education.

About Kids for Peace

Kids for Peace is a California-based global nonprofit that provides a platform for youth to actively engage in socially-conscious leadership, community service, arts, environmental stewardship and global friendships. Founded in 2006 by a mother and a high school honors student, Kids for Peace now engages over 17 million youth through their three programs: The Great Kindness Challenge, The Peace Pledge Program and Kind, Creative & Connected in the Age of COVID19.  

For more information about Kids for Peace or The Great Kindness Challenge, please contact Jill McManigal at +1.760.730.3320.

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