DMS students spread cheer in difficult times

M.P. Regan
Wednesday, March 10, 2021
Filling them with kindness

Dillon Middle School students Braxtyn Turney and Emma Lovaas inspect a gift box set to be distributed as part of this year’s DMS Kindness Campaign. M.P. Regan photo

“It was a dreary Sunday afternoon, and the doorbell rang,” recalled Katherine Buckley-Patton of a recent, unexpected, kind gesture delivered to her Dillon home.

“And a very nice young man handed us a sack with fresh baked goods, and a quote on how offering kindness was an important part of every day,” recalled Buckley-Patton, of one of a group of Dillon Middle School students she saw that day moving through her neighborhood.

“I can’t tell you how much it meant, an act so kind and simple,” said Buckley-Patton, a volunteer child advocate at Dillon Elementary School District #10.

That act came courtesy of the Kindness Campaign, an annual drive by Dillon Middle School students to spread good will.

“What a great, great moment during the dark days of COVID,” said Buckley-Patton.

“Some kids just do stuff at the school and some kids put posters in the hallway to make someone smile and other kids read to younger kids and read with them. My friends and I are making a plan to go out into some neighborhoods to give little goody bags to just random people,” said DMS seventh grader Braxtyn Turney of the contributions he and some of his friends have made to this year’s Kindness Campaign.

“My group, we are planning to make goodie bags or boxes for our teachers to show our appreciation for what they are teaching us and all the good they have done to raise us up. We have happy quotes to make them smile and goodies,” said Emma Lovaas, another DMS seventh grader, on her work as part of the campaign.

Before embarking on their benevolent endeavors, Kindness Campaigners submit a business plan to a DMS faculty advisor and let fellow students critique and help them improve their plans in a Shark Tank exercise.

“They gave us more ideas on where and when we should do it, and on finance-wise, how much it will cost,” recalled Turney of input on his project he gained during the Shark Tank.

Turney recalls getting read to as a kindergartner by Kindness Campaigners, while Lovaas had a more recent encounter with them.

“We were ding-dong-ditched by a Kindness Campaign group. My mom loved it,” recalled Lovaas of a happening at her home this winter.

Delivering benevolence anonymously forms a key part of many Kindness Campaign endeavors.

“It’s good to know you’re putting a smile on someone’s face without expecting anything in return,” said Turney, who, like Lovaas, takes time away from his love of sports to practice kindness through the campaign.

“I really want to do this most of the time,” said Lovaas of Kindness Campaign efforts.

“I am really motivated to do this.”