Acts of Kindness.
While spending time in the beautiful nation of South Africa, one factor remains a sad reality; the homelessness and the terrible living standards of many in the cities. Something that really stood out was the amount of young children and teenagers living in such appalling conditions, yet there was one instance where my ‘faith in humanity’ was restored.
Sitting outside a grocery shop I witnessed a heart-warming occurrence; a small boy was sitting outside, obviously hungry and patently unhappy. Bearing in mind this was a day before Christmas, his situation was perhaps the saddest one. This however changed as soon as a couple approached him, visibly showing their concern for his welfare. They gave him food and the woman, almost in tears if not already, hugged him and said something I couldn’t hear at that time. The boy, though still appearing unhappy, illustrated a huge amount of gratitude simply by his body language.
The couple then walked away and I still worried for the boy, South Africa isn’t a safe place, and he certainly wouldn’t be either. My worries subsided when the man from this couple came back to him and asked him to come with him; this man acted upon what he saw, a young boy needing help.
It was this point that I had now become slightly emotional, it is these acts of kindness that I wish occurred more in this world.
‘According to a recent estimate by the Human Sciences Resource Centre, South Africa is home to approximately 200,000 street homeless people, a significant portion of the nation’s population of 53.5 million (Rule-Groenewald et al., 2015)’
This alarming proportion details the injustice many endure daily; for young people to start up in life without stability occurs not only in South Africa but the UK, and other countries.
Yet this is a story of selfless kindness, and by happening the day before Christmas simply shows what the holidays really should be about. Kindness is a virtue too soon forgotten in this age of selfish acts and self-orientated decision’s. Though the question should be asked, what could be done in our everyday lives to better the people around us.
There are many instances where even a smile could brighten someone’s day; it has been proven that those suffering with mental illnesses suffer less with the repeated kindness around them, though this isn’t every case; it is sure enough that small acts of kindness improve every day.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD , Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease), said that ‘By practicing small acts of kindness, you will perceive yourself and others more positively. You’ll also appreciate your good fortune in comparison. Pick one day a week and carry out three small acts of kindness.’
It is so much more gratifying to be a good person; as you never know whose life you could greatly improve with the smallest of gestures.
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