Kindness Rocks, So Pass it On
If you’re walking through the neighbourhoods, public spaces, or the trails of Anmore, Belcarra, Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam and Port Moody, you may come across some brightly coloured rocks on your path. Upon closer inspection, these imaginatively painted rocks are covered with messages of kindness and inclusion. The Tri-Cities Together: Coalition against Racism & Hate, in partnership with S.U.C.C.E.S.S., is behind the Kindness Rocks campaign to tackle the impact of bigotry, intolerance and discrimination in our communities.
This campaign came to fruition by members who wanted to engage the public around kindness and inclusion. Not long ago, the Port Moody Police and the Spread Love campaign swept through their respective communities. It successfully engaged the public so the Tri-Cities Local Immigration Partnership decided to continue the success of this initiative while raising awareness of how to combat discrimination, intolerance, and racism in the Tri-Cities.
Every Rock Has A Story
Each rock has a message, story, or challenge written on it with the goal of giving people strategies and tools to foster inclusive and welcoming communities. If you find a rock, you can check out the corresponding message on the Tri-Cities Local Immigration Partnership website. A few examples:
“See something? Say something! For many, standing up for others can be daunting and can put your safety at risk. There are different ways you can stand up for others: reporting an incident to authorities, asking others for assistance in intervening, or removing the target from the situation before an incident escalates. See our community protocol for more information.”
“Ubuntu – I am because we are. Ubuntu is a Nguni Bantu term meaning ‘humanity.’ It is often translated as ‘I am because we are,’ or ‘humanity towards others,’ but is often used in a more philosophical sense to mean ‘the belief in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity.’ The term became more widely known outside of Southern Africa in 1994 when Desmond Tutu chaired the South Africa Truth & Reconciliation Commission. Think about how we are all connected and how we can support each other in our communities.”
“You belong. A sense of belonging creates ownership, a validation that you are valued as a member of our society. How can you help someone feel that they belong in our community?”
“One of the biggest challenges is raising awareness of what bigotry, intolerance and discrimination look like, both at the individual and systemic level. Our society is known for its politeness, so these issues can sometimes be overlooked. Understanding their manifestations helps us address them in a meaningful and impactful way,” explains Abigail, from Tri-Cities LIP.
If you find a rock, check out its message behind it at the Tri-Cities LIP website. Share the message with your networks using the hashtag #kindessrocks and tag Tri-Cities LIP on Facebook @tricitieslip or on Twitter @tc_lip. The social engagement has been great so far, “people are commenting and sharing their perspectives around the diversity and inclusion messages are important. It’s an opportunity to share and to learn from one another,” says Abigail.
We each have a role to play in making our community a healthy space and place. Kindness rocks. Pass it on.