Feeling sad or angry or powerless? Make someone’s day.
Four years ago when hate speech became more emboldened and public than it’d been in decades, I realized that if regular people were perpetuating most of the hate, then regular people should be able to stop it.
We called ourselves the Local Love Brigade, and we started sending postcards to others who needed love: a 9-year-old girl who had been bullied for being Jewish, another girl dealing with a racist classmate, Syrian refugees resettling nearby, and others. Check out this video from our very first gathering.
Some of the people even wrote back. It was reading those letters that pushed me to recognize the power of what we were doing. And that sometimes one postcard — even from a stranger; sometimes, especially from a stranger — is all it takes for someone to feel seen, to feel heard, to know they matter.
The power of one small act of kindness from a stranger is what inspired Flight of the Puffin, coming out this May, and I’m so excited for #PuffinBrigades to sprout up in schools and communities spreading kindness.
What’s the #PuffinBrigade?
It’s a way for people to make and send postcards to folks who could use cheering up. Inspired by the characters, in Flight of the Puffin, it’s a way for us to feel the connections that exist across divides even when it’s hard!
How Does It Work?
- Make your own postcard! Any index card or cut up cardstock will do. You can also download a free template below. Then, decorate them with drawing or a message that you think will help make someone’s day better.
- Flip the card over and write an address for where you want the card to be sent. You could send it to someone you know or someone you don’t know. For ideas, check with folks who are working to support others, such as an LGBTQ support organization, a children’s hospital, a homeless shelter, a racial justice organization, or a nursing home. You can also check the Local Love Brigade Facebook Group to see if there are other folks who need love.
- Add a stamp. You can use a postcard stamp of your own, or you can order special puffin stamps below.
- Mail it!
If you’re up for more, share a picture of your postcards with the #PuffinBrigade hashtag (just make sure personal addresses are covered up). You can also consider starting a Puffin Brigade at your school! Then, you can share ideas about who needs postcards and spend time together as you make the cards (either virtually or in person).
Optional Resources to Support Your Puffin Brigade
You can be part of the #PuffinBrigade with just an index card, markers, and a stamp, but sometimes it’s fun to set yourself up with extra puffiny materials!
Coming in March!
- Free downloadable blank templates for postcards
- Available for Purchase: exclusive Flight of the Puffin stamps!
- Available for Purchase: a set of of 25 blank postcards & 25 exclusive Flight of the Puffin stamps