We spend a lot of time reporting on problems, but we know there are good things happening out there, too. Because when the going gets tough, plenty of people come through with random acts of kindness. We’d like to give them their due and share the joy during these hard times, so drop us a line if you’d like to praise someone, thank someone or just call attention to something good that’s happened.
Please tell us your story and we’ll post it below. We’d prefer to use your real name and city of residence, but if you’d rather remain anonymous, we’re OK with that. Submissions might be edited for length and style.
Send your story to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A good egg
While walking our dog March 28, my husband and I had some unexpected wonderful good luck! I recently had purchased a garbage pick-up stick so I could pick up trash while we walk. We were down on the river walk trail just below First Street in Snohomish when I spotted a green plastic egg. I was about to drop it in my garbage sack when it split open and revealed its contents. Inside was a $100 bill with a sticky note attached that said, “You are safe and loved!” It also said to post a note or picture to #222randomactsOMS, but I am not a Twitter or Instagram user so I hope the special “Bunny” who hid the egg will read this article. We were delighted with the surprise and decided to pass along the money to the Everett Gospel Mission to help with this year’s Easter meals.
—Shelly Benda, Lake Stevens
Working in my yard recently I noticed a man on a bike checking out the barbecue I had left on the sidewalk, free for the taking. Straddling his bike, he started slowly rolling both down the sidewalk near Rainier and Everett avenues. I asked him how far he had to go. He says, “Just down by the mission.” Realizing this was over a mile away, I told him to leave it and when I finished my task I would bring it down to him. (He and a friend live in a car near the mission which is allowing no one inside due to COVID-19.)
An hour later I delivered the BBQ to him, and then, thinking, “What good is an empty ’Q to someone living on the street?” I gave him $20 and said please go get something to put on the grill. Perhaps he bought something else, but that wasn’t up to me. You’re welcome, Memphis.
I hope it was appreciated, but more important is sharing the message that when we do small random acts, it can help others but it also makes us feel better.
We need understanding, compassion and generosity more than ever.
—Charles LR. Johnstone, Everett
Help is out there
Because of a “squatters law” I lost everything I’ve ever owned, including my home. I’m 61 years old and was left to sleep in a car while drug addicts stayed in my home for 3 months and stole and sold everything I owned. The good news is how many resources are available to me in Snohomish County. I used to always feel sorry seeing people pushing around their shopping carts while homeless and on drugs. I just thought they didn’t have any other options. I was wrong. I dialed 211 and from that moment on everything I needed was available to me. But it took work!
I have a place to live, food to eat, clothes to wear and money to buy some necessities. All given to me by kind strangers and great programs!
I am now staying in a beautiful home in Everett through the Vision Church. There’s Esther’s Place beneath the Presbyterian Church downtown Everett, right across the street from the courthouse. It’s open from 5 a.m to 1 p.m., with heat, food, couches and movies to watch.
The Carnagie building has endless programs with information for homeless women and men. There’s Volunteers of America that provide vouchers for motel rooms. There’s St. Vincent de Paul that provides all sorts of different options for people in need.
There’s the H.E.N. program — Housing and Essential Needs. Catholic Community Services is another amazing place to get gas cards, food and shelter. I have food stamps. I have the best medical insurance in the country.
If your life is at its very worst I suggest you pick up a phone and call 211.
I may have lost all my material items but I haven’t lost my heart and I haven’t lost my spirit. Everything else can be replaced. I have nothing else to lose except my will to live and my love of God. I feel blessed. I feel grateful. And I feel hope.
Thank you Everett Herald and thank you so much to Snohomish County for everything you’ve done for me.
God bless you all,