KINDNESS MATTERS - ROCKIES HOME RUN FOR KINDNESS
The Rockies Home Run for Kindness Program is off and running!
On April 21 and 22, Rockies players and coaches visited 11 schools in Denver to chat with high school students about the importance of performing random acts of kindness in their everyday lives.
While the Rockies have long had a character education program for elementary school students ("Make An Impact") and recently added a physical education program for middle school kids ("Next Level Challenge"), Rockies Home Run for Kindness is the club's first official program designed to transform the halls of area high schools.
Rockies Home Run for Kindness, a cooperative program between The Foundation For A Better Life and The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation, is the first of its kind in Major League Baseball. By encouraging students to do at least 90 random acts of kindness, the overarching goal of the program is to combat violence in schools and encourage a culture of kindness in each school. For the first-ever Rockies Home Run for Kindness group, 11 pilot high schools were selected from the Denver Public Schools system: Abraham Lincoln High School, Bruce Randolph High School, Career Education Center Middle College, Contemporary Learning Academy High School, George Washington High School, Martin Luther King Jr. Early College, John F. Kennedy High School, North High School, South High School, Summit Academy and Thomas Jefferson High School.
And each school has at least one Rockies player paired with them as their Rockies representative for kindness, visiting the school and speaking to students about their experiences in baseball and life. Participating players included Nolan Arenado, Brandon Barnes, Matt Belisle, Charlie Blackmon, Rex Brothers, Tyler Chatwood, Michael Cuddyer, Jorge De La Rosa, Carlos Gonzalez, LaTroy Hawkins, Justin Morneau, Franklin Morales, Jordan Pacheco, Wilin Rosario, Drew Stubbs and others.
As soon as school visits were completed by players and staff from the Rockies, The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation and The Foundation For A Better Life, students immediately took to social media to share with the world the random acts of kindness they were doing on a daily basis. Students from these schools demonstrated that random acts of kindness do not have to be big initiatives or things that require a great deal of time or effort; they can be as simple as holding the door for someone, buying lunch for a friend, having a friendly conversation with someone new or simply being nice to someone.
Even though several schools have already surpassed their goal of 90 random acts of kindness, there are still a few weeks left for students to let the Rockies know the great things they're doing to transform the culture of their school through kindness. And on Saturday, May 17, leaders from each school will attend the Rockies game at Coors Field, and will be honored in a pregame ceremony alongside their player representative. On top of that, a select group of three schools were also invited to Coors Field on May 2 for their earlier random acts of kindness work during the Aspen Challenge, a program that provides students with the opportunity to develop their leadership skills and collaborate with peers.
Only time will tell if the Rockies Home Run for Kindness Program is able to, in fact, decrease violence in schools, but it's certainly a step in the right direction.
Click the button below for more information on the Rockies Home Run for Kindness Program, including additional information and lesson plans from The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation and a look at the acts of kindness shared by each school.