Inspired by the book Flight of the Puffin, #PuffinsUnite encourages readers to send postcards with positive messages to others. Postcards can be left around school or town for people to find, or they can be sent to organizations that support those who might need extra love: nursing homes, homeless shelters, Meals on Wheels, LGBTQIA organizations, racial justice organizations or simply individuals who could use a boost. It’s amazing how the simple act of putting an encouraging postcard into the world can make us feel connected – and realize the power each of us has inside. Because we have the power to send out ALL KINDS of ripples of kindness!
How Does It Work?
- Make your own postcard! Any index card or cut up cardstock will do. You can also download a free postcard template OR order a pack of 50 ready-made blank #PuffinsUnite postcards. Decorate it with a drawing or positive 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. It could be for anyone who you think could use a boost.
- Add a stamp (a postcard stamp won’t cost as much as a regular stamp).
- Mail it!
To send out even more ripples of kindness…
- Share a picture of your postcards with the #PuffinsUnite hashtag! (Just make sure personal addresses are covered up).
- You can also start a #PuffinsUnite group 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).
The Real-Life Inspiration for #PuffinsUnite
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 set up a Facebook group) and then 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, and I’m so excited for #PuffinsUnite groups to start springing up in schools and communities spreading kindness.
You can be part of #PuffinsUnite with just an index card, markers, and a stamp, but sometimes it’s fun to set yourself up with extra puffin-y materials!