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 Half a Million Students Across the U.S. Unite in Kindness

​Youth Kick-off the New Year with the Great Kindness Challenge on Jan. 27-31, 2014

Students across the U.S. are fired-up for the Great Kindness Challenge (GKC). This is one week in the school year when students perform as many acts of kindness on campus as possible, using a provided checklist of 50 suggestions. For the schools, it's free, easy to implement, and has the power to increase empathy, tolerance, and compassion for all students from kindergarten through high school. The GKC provides a fun and meaningful way for youth of all ages to create and inspire more kindness, unity, and respect in their schools and communities. 

Jill McManigal, executive director of Kids for Peace, stated, "When students perform kind act after kind act after kind act, kindness becomes a habit. When kindness becomes a habit, peace becomes possible.”

Imagine students complimenting each other, reaching out to a lonely child, picking up trash, surprising friends with happy notes in their backpacks, thanking their teachers creatively, and eating lunch with a new group of friends. These kind acts and more will happen in schools across all 50 states during the 3rd Annual Great Kindness Challenge—School Edition! Schools complement and enhance the GKC week with kindness rallies, anti-bullying essay contests, kindness-themed spirit days, Walls of Kindness, and Kindness Stations at recess to practice and reinforce the idea that Kindness Matters!

Shelley Carlisle, a teacher who participated in the 2013 GKC, is a witness to the transformative power of kind acts, no matter how small. She stated, “Our campus has experienced some radical change. Smiles, thoughtfulness, and a much more positive attitude can be seen around the Cottonwood Canyon Elementary campus.”

What began in 2012 with three schools in Carlsbad, California has blossomed into a nationwide movement with 505,773 students in 987 schools pledging to participate. There is still plenty of time for schools to get involved and demonstrate that Kindness Matters.

The Great Kindness Challenge is made possible by the generosity of Dignity Health, our presenting sponsor and our supporting sponsors: ExaMobile, The Code Crew, ViaSat, The Carlsbad Charitable Foundation, The New Children's Museum, NRG, Starbucks, SDG&E, The Super Dentists and Positively Kids.

For more information, to register your school, or to download the checklist visit: or​

The Great Kindness Challenge-School Edition was created by Kids for Peace. The school edition was inspired by the success of their annual global Great Kindness Challenge. In August 2013, youth in 75 countries on 6 continents participated in the 6th annual Great Kindness Challenge-Global Edition.

Kids for Peace is a global, chapter-based nonprofit that provides a platform for youth to actively engage in socially-conscious leadership, community service, arts, environmental stewardship and global friendship.