New group on campus encourages random acts of kindness


Taylor Veazey

Upon entering her junior year at The University of Alabama, Jennifer Hodnett realized she wanted to make a difference on campus while she still had the chance. In that spirit, she created Crimson Kindness.

A new student organization on campus, Crimson Kindness aims to create a community of compassion through random acts of kindness on campus.

“We want to encourage our members to be ambassadors of kindness on campus through their daily lives, as well as doing things together as a group,” Hodnett, a junior majoring in human development and family studies, said.

Hodnett said she got the idea after witnessing her friend buy a stranger’s lunch in a random act of kindness. She researched the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation, which is a “nonprofit organization founded upon the powerful belief in kindness and dedicated to providing resources and tools that encourage acts of kindness,” according to its website. Hodnett said the pieces fell into place after that.

“I really want to set a new standard or tone on campus,” Hodnett said. “A lot of people are coming in, and if they see a group like Crimson Kindness, they can say that there are people at this campus who care and hopefully will want to join us.”

Hodnett said one thing the group plans to do is leave uplifting sticky notes around campus for people to find. The notes will say things such as, “You’re beautiful,” “You’re awesome,” and “Have a wonderful day.” She said in the future they hope to make care packages for students during dead week and bring in guest speakers.

Audrey Gunn, a sophomore majoring in psychology, is the marketing coordinator for Crimson Kindness. She hopes to get the word out about the group over Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. She wanted to get involved because she hopes to see a campuswide movement for kindness.

“Everyone here is calling this place home for the next four years,” Gunn said. “The more kind we can be, the better it will be for everybody.”

Bethany Bickford, a junior majoring in psychology and the new financial coordinator for the group, said she is a happy person who likes to see other people happy and thinks campus could use some positive reinforcement.

“I hope we are able to make an impact on campus so people know who we are,” Bickford said. “Through hearing about it, maybe they will branch out and try to help out their neighbor.”

Hodnett said the responses she has received have already exceeded her hopes, and that speaks to the need for the organizations. She said overall she hopes Crimson Kindness will have an influence on people.

“If it can make that one person feel better, make them feel valued and impact their life, then it is worth it.”

Crimson Kindness will hold its first meeting for those interested in joining Thursday at 6 p.m. at the Child Development Research Center. For more information, find Crimson Kindness on Facebook.