Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Kindness- It Only Takes A Moment- Singapore Kindness Movement

Flash mobs seem to be the latest fad, and they're a global phenomena.  I first discovered their existence on a TV commercial ad not so long ago. So much for being in the know. But since then, there has been a plethora of flash mob activity, some bad- like the recent Jacksonville, Florida spontaneous flash mob that all but destroyed a Walmart, and then there's the opposite out of Singapore:

Singapore's on a mission to make people kinder and gentler, and so they established  "Singapore's Kindness Movement" (SKM). SKM recently gathered some 85 volunteers to create its "Kindness Only Takes A Moment" campaign, and filmed it.
Singapore, 19 July 2012 – There’s always time to make someone’s day. That is the heart of this year’s kindness message that began rolling out on 5th July.

Continuing from last year’s theme, “Say thanks, make someone’s day!” the new direction encourages the public to re-examine how they’re actually spending their time. In the 2012 Graciousness Index, a lack of time was the most often cited excuse for not being more kind or gracious to others.

The Singapore Kindness Movement (SKM) draws attention to some of the things that Singaporeans spend a lot of time on: mobile phones, browsing social media pages, playing computer games and mobile apps. The idea is then put forward that it does not take a lot of time to do something kind or gracious.

The Index also revealed that graciousness ratings are generally lower on public transport, public eating places such as hawker centres and food courts, as well as on the road. Accordingly, these public spaces are a focus area for this year’s campaign.

Each day, millions of commuters make use of the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) and bus services. The SKM is encouraging the public to make the most of this daily commuting time to make someone’s day.

For instance, one MRT station wall mural illustrates a popular mobile game with the following message, “Scrambling for words: 2 mins. Giving up your seat: 2 secs. If there’s time for distractions, surely there’s time for gracious actions.”
It's so true. All it takes is a moment, to smile at someone. Say hello. Open the door. Give a compliment. Let someone go ahead of you at the cashiers in a grocery store. It's the little things that count.  My 87-year-old dad told me that the postal carrier (a woman) offered to help him move this huge stump in our front yard. He refused, but was touched by her kindness.
The Singapore "Kindness" movement began back in 1996 when the Prime Minister at the time, Goh Chok Tong, proposed that Singapore become a more 'gracious' society by the 21st century. Current Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong is the patron of the movement.

SKM'S Mission Statement:

Mission of SKM

To help build a gracious Singapore, the Singapore Kindness Movement aims to encourage the individual to internalise courtesy, kindness and consideration. Our mission statement is:
To inspire graciousness through spontaneous acts of kindness, making life more pleasant for everyone.
Objectives of SKM
- To encourage all Singaporeans to be kind and considerate.
- To create public awareness of acts of kindness.
- To influence and raise the standards of behaviour and responsibility.
I love this. I think every country needs to adopt the same kind of movement.

Poke around the website, there's some good stuff there.

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