Mother and daughter continue kindness campaign

Jim Day
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Anderson House relief worker Rachel Evangelho, middle, accepts a donation of household items from Katie Whelan and her daughter Kenzie. The items will be used by women moving out of Anderson House and into their own home.

The goodness continues.

Ten-year-old Kenzie Whalen keeps working to fulfill a fulfilling gesture that has touched and inspired many across Prince Edward Island.

The Fort August girl teamed up with her mother, Katie, to respond in a selfless display of kindness to the senseless display of evil delivered on Sandy Hook School in December.  

The pair decided to perform 28 good deeds: one gesture of kindness for each of the 20 children killed on Dec. 14 in Newtown, Connecticut as well as one each for the six adults killed at the school, one for the shooter’s mother killed before the rampage at the school, and one more for the members of the community that were left facing incomprehensible horror, grief and loss.

The first good deed - placing Christmas cards signed “Best wishes from a friendly stranger’’ on the windshields of 26 cars in a mall parking lot in Charlottetown - was performed on Dec. 19.

Since than, Kenzie and Katie have served up numerous random acts of kindness, everything from singing Christmas carols at a seniors’ home to passing out mini cheesecakes to total strangers.

Kenzie says the volume of good deeds have slowed down considerably in the New Year with mom and daughter having busy agendas. The pair’s resolve to complete 28 random acts of kindness, though, has not waned in the least.

“As long as it takes us,’’ said Kenzie.

Kenzie notes she still does a lot of good deeds on a regular basis that she doesn’t even count toward her official tally.

“Our good deeds are not for people that we know but for strangers because we don’t want to get recognized,’’ she noted.

Katie and Kenzie just want people to smile and pass along a little kindness. Katie says she and her daughter are always “thinking and plotting’’ the next good deed.

The pair has two or three big ones currently in the works.

One is to present utensils, glass wear, dishes and saucers that they purchased to four women being set up in new apartments. The women have been staying in Anderson House, a safe and supportive shelter for women and their children who have been physically or emotionally abused or who live in constant fear of abuse.

Mom and daughter also plan to make up a couple of baby baskets, one for a baby boy and one for a baby girl.

“Basically like a baby shower for someone who may not get a chance to get one,’’ said Katie.

The positive response to the goodness campaign puts an added bounce in the already upbeat Kenzie.

“A lot of kids are like ‘wow, it’s really great that you are doing this. It’s neat to see the response.’’

Katie too is pleased to be adding some joy while also inspiring others to pay it forward.

“A lot of people said ‘you really inspired me,’’’ she said.

“I certainly do feel that we have affected people in our lives for the better...I do feel that we are making our little dent in the universe.’’

If anyone would like to assist in this kindness campaign, they can contact Katie at 394-4965.

Organizations: Sandy Hook School, Anderson House

Geographic location: Prince Edward Island.The Fort August, Newtown, Connecticut, Charlottetown

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