“I was on my ups route which is Ludington [Street] in Escanaba and I have a lot of businesses and they were being shut down because of the pandemic and the executive orders and I wanted to find a way to start helping our community,” said Cris Lucier, founder of Kindness Rocks Delta County. “These businesses are our friends and family.”
Cris Lucier started by purchasing gift certificates from those businesses and held drawings through nominations on Facebook for people who are spreading kindness throughout Delta County.
“Paying it forward, nurses, convenient store workers, fast food workers, just any body that was showing kindness and sticking together and just what our community is about,” said Lucier.
The effort started in April and its been flourishing ever since.
“People have gotten inspired by it,” said Lucier. “They do pay it forwards . October was Domestic Violence Awareness Month and we did supply kits for them where Kindness Rocks Delta County group purchased them and we got to donate over $600 worth of supplies. We currently are working with a couple of the salons that were affected by the shutdown.”
“We are selling holiday haircuts,” said Misha Gagne, Owner, Serenity Salon. “Members of the community can come in and buy a gift certificate for $20 and it covers a haircut for law enforcement and first responders.”
This is just one example of the cycle of kindness. Not only is it showing appreciation to the people who keep our communities safe everyday but also supporting a small local business.
“I think it’s a powerful movement especially in a time like this right now,” said Tonia Curry, Owner, The Man Cave. “You know, it’s been a rough 2020 so far and anything that we can so to create magic or kindness for people in our community is going to help.”
Whether it’s a free hair cut, a gift card or some flowers…. not matter of big or how small an act of kindness goes a long way.
“My UPS delivery driver approached me about buying some gift certificates to give to kind people in the area,” said Pam Frossard, Owner, Pam’s Petals.
And since then, Pam’s Petals has continued brighten the area through this effort.
“Just won the certificates and they got certificates for being kind and it was kind of exciting and then you’d watch every week because there was gift certificates for different shops and different things,” said Frossard. “I myself nominated a few people and they were pretty excited to get their little award and their little treats and gift certificates for wherever they got at the time. It was just fun and then Cris will pop in every now and then and ask us to send flowers to a so and so he saw was having a bad day and making them happy.”
“I don’t think of it as you know just something to help my business,” said Sue Parker, Co-owner, Nyman’s Jewelers. “It’s to help the community as a whole. What he is doing is really bring in awareness to the fact that we just have to be kind. It doesn’t matter, things don’t matter. You just have to be kind and pay it forward. Be nice to other people. That’s all it is.”
Lucier says it’s not just this initiative he started but kindness is what the U.P. is all about.
“This is something that our community is about,” said Lucier. “This is what the U.P. is about. You don’t see this anywhere else but here and that’s what we hold special. Yooper strong means Yooper together and just the love that we see in just being kind. So it’s amazing and it’s growing and it’s just like a little thing like that can be so big. It can move people. It’s the momentum, it’s the positive message that our leaders should be sending, that our community should be sending that, that’s what we’re about because that’s what brings people together, not dividing people.”
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