Pay It Forward

After an interview with girl scout Bernadette Deremiah, I learned that people our age are participating in the pay it forward project in their own way. Deremiah’s idea is to put up her own branch of Little Libraries around Converse and San Antonio. It’s a concept of having several selections of books set up in various locations. You can pick up a book, read it, and return it to any other library. Her idea introduces a way for people to get books easily and quickly.

This idea of paying it forward, showing kindness to other people, is exactly what is observed on April 26, International Pay It Forward Day.

To start her project, Deremiah has asked others around her to help gather the materials she needs. She has asked for restaurants and shops to sponsor her for donations of books and other supplies. So far, her idea is still starting up, but she has high hopes for it.

Some people choose to pay it forward by making a big change in the community around them. It could be something that we might do every day and not even know it. Many people do it by paying for someone else’s Starbucks along with their own. The chain continues until you have a chain of paid drinks that last 23 cars.

Numbers of restaurants, like Rosa’s Fresh Pizza, have collected pay it forward cards solely for those that are homeless. Others donate to charities. In big ways and in small, they contribute to the world around them just because it’s something they want to do that benefit others.

There are many more ways to pay it forward than buying a meal for someone. You can do the tiniest things that will make someone’s day. Bring your friend a coffee on the morning they have a test. Offer to help tutor someone in your class if you know they’re struggling. Give a friend a lift to work after school.

It’s all these little things that you can do. Maybe they won’t have an impact on you, but they could have one on someone else. Helping out those in need and even those who aren’t can go a long way.

Recently, I gave away a beautiful painting I loved very much. I gave it away because I knew it would be the perfect thing to cheer up my friend. And it did.

I wasn’t as sad about giving it away; seeing the joy on their face when they looked at it made me feel great. I made their day better, even if it meant sacrificing something that made me happy.

Try doing an act of kindness on April 26. You don’t necessarily have to sacrifice something important to you, but if you have something you don’t use anymore, give it to those who will. Paying it forward to anyone or everyone around you can change your day, maybe even your life.