An Australian-based initiative promoting acts of kindness, #TheKindnessPandemic, is bringing joy to people on the front line, including healthcare supermarket workers.

The project was established on 14th March and a Facebook Group now has   over 100,000 members from around the world sharing acts of kindness.

The project was established by Dr Catherine Barrett, whotells Dave she was concerned about the impact of the Virus on older people – and identified the need for kindness more broadly.

Dr Barrett wants to spread intersectional kindness, or kindness for people who are on the front lines including healthcare and supermarket workers and those that are marginalised (older people, people living with a disability, those who are immunocompromised) . Group members are asked to share acts of kindness and the hashtag #TheKindnessPandemic

The first campaign was for Random Acts of Kindness in Supermarkets after reports of supermarket team members being verbally abused.  

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Dr Barrett said; “Supermarket workers are going to work to help make sure we have the supplies we need – without them we will have no food. We need to be kind to supermarket workers and let them know that we appreciate what they are doing for us.

“The Random Acts of Kindness shared in supermarkets have been heartwarming. People have emailed or called their local supermarket to thank them. Those going to the supermarket have dropped off cards thanking staff, bought staff chocolates and some have posted notes around supermarkets reminding customers to be kind to staff.

“We are pleased with the support from Woolworths for our campaign – they have demonstrated real leadership at this time and their support makes a significant difference to us.” 

Woolworths Supermarkets Managing Director, Claire Peters said; “In these challenging times, it is incredibly important that kindness prevails.  Our team members are doing the very best they can under the circumstances and these words of encouragement they’ve experienced from the #TheKindnessPandemic has left them positively overwhelmed.

“It’s the simple things – say thank you, be polite and treat them with respect.

“The safety of our team members is our top priority and we do not tolerate aggressive or abusive behaviour towards them in any circumstance.”