Image for spinner

COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

Click here for related information.

Volunteer Center Staff is on temporary furlough with no access to email or voicemail due to Columbia Association's closure. 

Acts of Kindness

Volunteering is helping others. One way to make a difference in your community while remaining safe is through acts of kindness.  Acts of kindness often benefits the recipient(s), as well as the giver by making both happier1. Below are just a few ideas that can be done at home or in your neighborhood with your family, or with family (across town or long-distance) and friends by using teleconferencing, videos, Facetime and other technology.

  1. Follow social distancing guidelines as promoted by the Governor.
  2. Listen to respectfully to parents, guardians and family members.
  3. Do a chore for a family member for free. 
  4. Collect recycling.
  5. Collect soda can tabs. They can be donated to local charities for cash.
  6. Ask if you can help someone in your family.
  7. Call your grandparents to say "Hi".
  8. Pick up the trash you see while out walking your neighborhood. 
  9. Compliment someone. 
  10. Greet and share a smile with someone in your family, while taking a stroll through the neighborhood or in line at the store when purchasing essential items.  
  11. When in public spaces be courteous and respectful of social distancing. 
  12. Tell someone to have a nice day. 
  13. Send encouraging quotes. 
  14. Check in on a neighbor via phone call, text or email.
  15. Send a card to a service member or neighbor (USO, Wounded Warrior Project)
  16. Tell someone they are special to you.
  17. Collect and pack up clothes you no longer need or use and donate when donations re-open.
  18. Turn off lights you're not using.
  19. Contact a friend you haven’t seen or spoken to in a while to say hello and ask how they are doing.
  20. Read a book to a family member (children, sibling, grandparent). Let someone read to you. 
  21. Loan your favorite book to a family member.
  22. Forgive someone or say you are sorry.
  23. Make your siblings bed.
  24. Clean up after yourself.
  25. Sing songs together or to one another.
  26. Turn off the water while brushing your teeth.
  27. Make a thank you card for your parents.
  28. Ask your parents what you can do to help them. 
  29. Set the table. Clear the table after dinner. Offer to wash the dishes. 
  30. Help make dinner.
  31. Write notes of appreciation and encouragement and leave them around the house.  Share them together during dinner. 
  32. Make a get-well card for someone.
  33. Send a postcard to a friend or relative.
  34. Write a poem for a friend.
  35. Make a homemade gift for someone to give to them later when you see them again.
  36. Share a special toy with a sibling.
  37. Clean up your room without being asked.
  38. Donate extra food in your pantry to a local food pantry serving those in need.
  39. Collect spare change to give a food pantry when able. (Howard County Food Bank (Howard County Community Action Council))
  40. Teach someone in your family something new/helpful. Or create a video and teach the world.   
  41. Reuse paper when drawing.
  42. Clean up your toys without being asked.
  43. Stop negative comments by changing the subject when someone starts talking in a negative, bad way.
  44. Play "10 Good Things.” Friends/family members each take turns to say ten good things about each person playing.
  45. Introduce a friend to someone new. 
  46. Make Chore coupons for friends, family and neighbors.
  47. Offer virtual hugs. 
  48. Host a virtual dance party or exercise class.
  49. Share a book at a local Little Free Library.
  50. Begin a gratitude journal that can be shared with family, friends.

We are very interested in learning about some of the other ways people are doing acts of kindness during this time.  Have you done or been the recipient of an act of kindness not listed here?   Please share it with us on our Facebook and/or Twitter pages, both @VolunteerHoward. Or send us an email and we’ll add it to our list online. Remember, sharing is caring! Thank you.
1For more about Kindness Health Facts, go to

Volunteer Center

6310 Hillside Ct.
Columbia, MD 21046