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Club encourages kindness

Freshman Alexis Beery, the creator of the Acts of Random Kindness club, which seeks to display kindness towards others in simple ways. | John Uy/THE CHIMES

 

Simple acts of random kindness have the potential to change and impact others lives, and Biola students have an opportunity to spread kindness through a club new to campus this year, Acts of Random Kindness. This idea, presented in the movie “Evan Almighty,” inspired freshman Alexis Beery to create the club. Beery said others’ simple acts of random kindness greatly impacted her life, and she wanted to extend the same kindness people showed her. Beery said she struggled with depression and when people complimented her on her outfit or simply said hi, it positively impacted her day.

REACHING OTHERS

“It was those simple acts of random kindness that people showed me — that is when it impacted my life. That’s why I want to give that back to other people,” Beery said.

Beery said the main goal of the club is to reach others through simple acts of kindness and impact students who struggle with feelings of loneliness or depression by letting them know they are cared for.

Beery shared her testimony at the communion service during orientation week. At age five, she and her twin brothers were diagnosed with Dopa Responsive Dystonia, creating health problems that continued as she grew up and prevented her from participating in sports for 18 months due to breathing difficulties. Through a compound amino-acid called 5HTP, her breathing issues improved and she is now able to compete as a member of Biola’s track team.

AN INSPIRING TESTIMONY

Beery’s testimony inspired sophomore elementary education major and club vice president Tiffany Mata, who agreed to take on the role of vice president after Beery approached her two weeks later.

As vice president, Mata helps Beery by organizing events and making her ideas come to life. Mata also connected with the idea of creating a club where everyone feels included and offers a place to make new friends. In addition, she said she hopes members will extend the kindness they receive within the club toward others in their own lives.

“We don’t want anyone to feel lonely while they’re here at school,” Mata said. “While we have that group going on, we can go out into our own lives and still impact the world and spread random acts of kindness outside the club.”

CHANGING THE WORLD

The club’s first event was a movie night on Friday, Sept. 25 in Sutherland Auditorium showing the film “Evan Almighty.” Beery chose this movie because of a scene that inspired her to create the club. The scene features Morgan Freeman, who plays God in the film, writing “one simple act of random kindness at a time” in the sand after the flood occurred.

Before showing the movie, Beery shared her vision for the club through a rap she wrote.

A small group of girls attended the showing, and Mata said they were amazed at how the film’s main message correlates with the club’s purpose to impact others through kindness. Mata also said the movie emphasizes how God helps people extend kindness toward others.

“That’s the main idea, that you can change the world through one act of random kindness at a time, and that’s pretty much what we stand for. The movie shows that you can’t do it on your own — you need God,” Mata said.

Beery said impacting Biola students is the club’s main focus this year. Club members will write notes of encouragement for every undergraduate student on campus and deliver notes to dorm residents. The club will also travel to hospitals to pray for patients as well as veterans shelters and other military establishments to pray for soldiers, military, and veterans.

EVERY SINGLE PERSON IS CARED FOR

“The most important purpose of our club is letting every single person know that they’re cared for, they’re loved for and their life matters in the most simplest ways possible,” Beery said.

Beery hopes to take club members to other Christian campuses around the United States, like Azusa Pacific University and Grand Canyon University, as well as secular universities to share the club’s activities and execute similar events with other student leaders. She also hopes to expand these acts of kindness locally to places like hospitals and globally by organizing missions trips to places in Africa.

Beery has not set club meeting times or locations yet, but plans to hold club meetings on Friday afternoons in a dorm lobby and do club activities, such as beach trips, on Saturdays.

 

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