Archive for Kindness Posts

published in Change, Compassion, Death, Grief, Inspiration, Kindness, Life After Loss by Maryanne | June 7, 2017 | No Comment

Compassion in a Box – Consider Giving the Gift of a Solace Club Grief Box

“It is important to remember that there is no right or wrong way to grieve. However, there are ways to help alleviate the suffering we experience. Some of these include increasing healthy coping skills, finding expressive outlets, and utilizing social and community support.”

– Solace Club, part of note inside “More Than Flowers” Box

Give a gift that says, “I care and I am thinking of you”

If you know someone who has recently (or not so recently) experienced a significant loss, you may wish to consider sending them a grief box from the Solace Club. A great deal of thought and love has been put into designing and producing these beautiful boxes – for the purpose of helping support people on their journey through grief.

I recently had the honour of receiving the “More Than Flowers” box and thoroughly appreciated the useful gifts inside. The contents included: ginger candies (yum…they were devoured within a day!), Bach Flower Remedies candies, essential oil, a cooling eye mask, tissues, journal with pen, a remembrance bracelet, thank you cards, as well as grief cards with encouraging quotes on them.

But here’s the thing: it’s the love behind the boxes that will also work wonders.

The simple act of taking a moment to order a grief box through the Solace Club and having it sent to someone who is hurting may help them more than you will ever know.

When we lose someone we love, it can really hurt. And sometimes we can start to feel very alone and isolated as we try to make sense of the past, deal with the harsh realities of the present and begin to forge a new – and often unwanted – future.

“When we lose important people in our world to death, we lose more than the person themselves. We lose elements of that relationship, relationship with others, aspects of our identity, our sense of security, etc.”

– Solace Club, part of note inside “More Than Flowers” Box

After the death of a loved one, our world is turned upside down…and can stay upside down for years.

So when someone – a friend, family member, colleague, acquaintance or stranger – actually takes the time to choose and hand-write a sympathy card, bake a batch of cookies, order a beautiful bouquet of flowers and/or have a Solace Club grief box shipped, it isn’t just the material gift that provides comfort. The love behind the act of sending it can help heal another person’s broken heart…because it says, “I care and I am thinking of you.”

Please click here for further details on the “More Than Flowers” box (and to order).

To view the other grief boxes (Self-Care, Anger, Holiday Survival Kit) available through the Solace Club, here is the link.

“We live in a culture that does not teach us how to help loved ones in grief.”

– Solace Club

Together, we can continue to change that.

Maryanne Pope is the author of A Widow’s Awakening, the playwright of Saviour and the screenwriter of God’s Country. Maryanne is the CEO of Pink Gazelle Productions and Chair of the John Petropoulos Memorial Fund. If you would like to receive her regular weekly blog, please sign up here.

published in Animals, Change, Christmas, Face the Future, Giving, Inspiration, Kindness by Maryanne | December 14, 2016 | No Comment

Giving Gifts that Keep on Giving

 

“It’s not how much we give but how much love we put into giving.”

– Mother Teresa

Still in need of a some last minute Christmas gifts? 

Here are a few neat charity-related gift ideas that I love to give this time of year:

Adopt a polar bear; World Wildlife Fund Species at Risk Adoption Program

 

Cost: $40

Description: By symbolically adopting a species at risk, WWF will direct the funds to helping those animals. For the donation, you (or the person you choose) receive a polar bear stuffy, adoption certificate and poster.

Impact: By adopting a polar bear, you’ll help WWF fight climate change and protect a network of special areas critical for their survival.

Link: www.wwf.ca

Adopt a tiger; World Wildlife Fund Species at Risk Adoption Program

 

Cost: $40

Description: By symbolically adopting a species at risk, WWF will direct the funds to helping those animals. For the donation, you receive a tiger stuffy, adoption certificate and poster.

Impact: By adopting a tiger, you’ll help WWF fight the illegal trade of tiger parts.

Link: www.wwf.ca

Adopt an African elephant; World Wildlife Fund Species at Risk Adoption Program

 

Cost: $40

Description: By symbolically adopting a species at risk, WWF will direct the funds to helping those animals. For the donation, you receive an elephant stuffy, adoption certificate and poster.

Impact: Once common throughout Africa, elephant numbers were severely depleted in the 19th century, largely due to the massive ivory trade. While some populations are now stable, poaching and habitat destruction continue to threaten the species. If conservation action is not forthcoming, elephants may become locally eradicated in some parts of Africa within 50 years.

Link: www.wwf.ca

LaVielle plays with orphan babies at the JGI Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center

Become a Chimp Guardian; Jane Goodall Institute of Canada

 

Cost: $75

Description: All Chimp Guardians receive a photograph of La Vieille, her biography, a Chimp Guardian certificate, an 8″ plush toy chimpanzee and fact sheets about chimpanzees and JGI’s Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center.

Impact: When you become a Chimp Guardian you are supporting the Jane Goodall Institute’s initiatives to conserve habitat, protect chimpanzees in the wild and care for orphaned chimps at the Tchimpounga sanctuary. 

Link: www.janegoodall.ca

 

 

Wolves in Western Canada Need Your Help Now; Wolf Awareness Inc

 

Cost: Whatever you can afford to donate

Description: Wolves in Western Canada are running out of places to hide. Since 2006, more than 1000 wolves have been deliberately killed in Alberta through the use of strangling snares, gunned down from helicopters or poisoned with strychnine. In British Columbia, the provincial government has a strategic plan to kill a total of 700 wolves, hundreds of which have already been killed.

Impact: Wolf Awareness Inc is a non-profit organization committed to wolf conservation through research and public education regarding the ecology of the gray wolf. Your donation helps raise awareness about the needless and unethical slaughter of wolves. Help be a voice on behalf of wolves.

Link: wolfawarenessinc.org

Mother and Baby Tetanus Pack; a Unicef Survival Kit

 

Cost: $25

Description: Tetanus kills a baby every nine minutes. This high-impact gift immunizes mothers, who then pass immunity on to their babies, protecting them against the devastating effects of tetanus. The Kiwanis Eliminate Project will match your gift, doubling its impact on child survival.

Impact: This will provide 355 Tetanus Vaccines

Website: www.unicef.ca

Water Purification Tablets; a Unicef Survivial Kit

 

Cost: $16

Description: Nearly 1,000 children die every day from unsafe water and lack of basic sanitation. Help children gain access to clean water and give a gift that saves lives.

Impact: 2531 water purification tablets!

Website: www.unicef.ca

Thanks so much for reading the Face the Future Christmas blog series…and I hope you have a wonderful holiday season!!

Maryanne Pope is the author of A Widow’s Awakening, the playwright of Saviour and the screenwriter of God’s Country. Maryanne is the CEO of Pink Gazelle Productions and the Chair of the John Petropoulos Memorial Fund. If you would like to receive her weekly blog, please sign up here.

Face the Future is an on-line environmental campaign that raises awareness about tangible ways that individuals can help reduce their environmental footprint one step at a time.

For further info and/or to receive the Face the Future e-mails, here is the link.

published in Christmas, Giving, Inspiration, Kindness by Maryanne | December 5, 2016 | 2 Comments

Shoebox Gift Gives a Homeless Woman More than Shampoo – It Also Lets Her Know She is Not Alone Nor Forgotten

 

loneliest-time-of-year

What is the Shoebox Project?

The Shoebox Project for Shelters, supported by Dream, collects and distributes gifts in the form of Shoeboxes to women who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness in communities across Canada and the US.

Each Shoebox is filled with items valued at $50 that any woman will likely enjoy, but may not splurge on for herself in difficult times.

ShoeboxEveryDayLogosEN_FR

Why it matters…

For women who have been displaced from their homes and estranged from their families, the holidays can be a particularly challenging time. Often, women feel disconnected from society, forgotten and alone. Reducing the feelings of isolation and loneliness faced by women living in shelters is one of the most important outcomes of The Shoebox Project.

A Shoebox gift is a powerful reminder for a woman that she has not been forgotten and that she remains a valued and respected member of her community.

shoeboxes-at-madrona

The growing stash of shoeboxes at Madrona Massage in Sidney, BC – a Shoebox Depot

For those giving gifts…

The Shoebox Project is an opportunity to give back to someone in your community. This small gesture of kindness has an immediate and positive impact on the woman who receives it.

The act of creating Shoeboxes tends to bring people together and works to give a human face to the broad issues of poverty and homelessness. When a person makes the effort to assemble a gift for a woman living in a shelter, it brings to mind the challenges she may be facing and the many obstacles to overcome.

mas-shoebox-getting-filled

A shoebox geting assembled in Maryanne’s sunroom

The holidays are often one of the loneliest times of the year for women experiencing homelessness. This year can be different for her. Join the Shoebox Project as the #JustGiveLove this holiday season.

A Shoebox is a powerful reminder that a woman in a shelter is valuable and not alone; someone in her community is thinking of her.

We can give her warmth, comfort, and confidence, by making a Shoebox gift just for her this year. Get involved in your community before it’s too late and make a Shoebox for a local woman in need of a little holiday cheer!

For further info…

For further details, including what to put in a shoebox and to find a depot location nearest you (in Canada), please visit the Shoebox Project website.

Please note, the shoeboxes need to be dropped off at depots by Dec 17th.

If you live in Sidney, BC…

There are 3 shoebox depots in Sidney:

Empire Hydrogen Energy Systems
7 – 10189 McDonald Park Rd, Sidney, BC

Madrona Massage Therapy & Acupuncture
#2 – 2490 Beven Avenue, Sidney BC

Security House Accounting Services
#3 – 2490 Bevan Avenue, Sidney BC

Personally, I have never been homeless so I have no concept of how frightening that must be. But if a shoebox can help lessen this fear for a woman in need, even for just a few hours, then $50 is one heck of a wise investment. There are some things you can’t put a price tag on…and hope is one of them. That much I do know.

Maryanne Pope is the author of A Widow’s Awakening, the playwright of Saviour and the screenwriter of God’s Country. Maryanne is the CEO of Pink Gazelle Productions and the Chair of the John Petropoulos Memorial Fund. If you would like to receive her weekly blog, please sign up here.