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franklin county times

February is American Heart Month, opportunity to focus on kindness

It’s February – the month that provides an opportunity for people to come together to acknowledge events including Valentine’s Day, American Heart Month and Random Acts of Kindness Day.

In 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson issued the first proclamation declaring February as American Heart Month. Each year, organizations around the country help promote American Heart Month by bringing attention to what steps to take in prevention of this deadly disease.

People support American Heart Month by participating in National Wear Red Day to raise awareness about cardiovascular disease, signing proclamations, making donations to the American Heart Association or sponsoring health and wellness walk fundraisers.

The GFWC Book Lovers Study Club recognizes American Heart Month in February each year by giving programs on how to prevent heart disease. Some of these tips include eating healthy, being more physically active, keeping a healthy weight, giving up smoking and keeping blood pressure under control. The members also participate in the National Wear Red Day and wear Red to the February club meeting.

This year, the Book Lovers combined both American Heart Month and Random Acts of Kindness Day. Valentine’s Day kicks off Random Acts of Kindness Day which is held each year on February 17. It originated in 1995 in Denver, Colorado. The idea behind this celebration is to make the world a little brighter and better through little and simple kind gestures, words and actions.

The Book Lovers clubwomen selected visiting the elderly residents of the Country Cottage for their acts of kindness. Gayle McAlister and Ginger Saylor were hostesses and coordinated the meeting. The members held a Bingo party and donated bags of candy, Valentine cards, lotion, soaps and hand towels as gifts. Everyone enjoyed the bingo party, and the gift recipients expressed their appreciation.

Other ideas for acts of kindness to brighten someone’s day include:

  • Give sincere compliments to friends, family or even strangers.
  • Help a neighbor with tasks like mowing the lawn or grocery shopping.
  • Volunteer time at local charities, shelters or community events to make a positive impact.
  • Donate to charitable organizations.
  • Send an encouraging email to a colleague.
  • Let someone merge while in traffic.
  • Pay it forward: When you’re in a drive-thru, pay for the order of the person behind you.

Do we need to be reminded to show acts of kindness? Surely not! Each day is an opportunity to show kindness that can make the world a little brighter!

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