The Center for Leadership and Service (CLS) hosted the Color A Smile event this past Feb. 25. The event transpired from 12:30 to 2 p.m. in the newly renovated Greek Lounge, located in the Miron Student Center (MSC).
The purpose of this event was to gather students to color pictures which are being sent to senior citizens, troops that are overseas, or anyone else that is in need of a smile. When people receive these drawings, it brightens their mood and can even impact their whole day. This event was a good example to show students the impact that one simple act of kindness can have on people.
This event was a collaboration with the non-profit organization Color A Smile. This organization has sent out over one million drawings to those in need over the past 25 years, and continue to do so. They are responsible for spreading smiles to people through these heartfelt and personal coloring pages and drawings.
This organization began in the early 1980's when a man named Jerry Harris noticed artwork on his friend's refrigerator. He recognized that the idea of receiving heartfelt drawings can really make someone's day. He first had the idea to distribute drawings to elderly people, as many tend to feel lonely or even forgotten. Over the years, this idea has expanded to include people of all ages and types all over the country.
Color A Smile is a unique organization because anyone can help by coloring, regardless of age or abilities. They spread kindness and happiness to so many in need, and allow anyone to help them complete their mission.
Since this event was a collaboration with Color A Smile and CLS, the students that attended were provided with the coloring sheets and materials to decorate them. If one wanted to send Color A Smile a picture and they weren't able to attend the event, one can do so at any time.
On the Color A Smile Website, one can click 'Volunteer to Color' on the top bar of the website and find the instructions to send in coloring pages. It is very easy to participate, as one just has to print a coloring page off of the website, color it in using crayons or markers and sign one's name and age on the corresponding lines. Then, one can mail the drawing to Color A Smile at PO Box 1516, Morristown, NJ 07962-1516 or 164 Ridgedale Ave, Unit 7, Morristown NJ 07960 if one is using FedEx or UPS.
The students that attended this event also learned the benefits of coloring. This act can be very relaxing and even therapeutic for many. The students got to spread kindness to those in need through a calming act, therefore benefiting but the volunteers and the people who will eventually receive these drawings.
Brittney Kennedy, a Service Specialist for CLS said that it is important to spread kindness because, "Not everyone sees it in their daily life. If you can spread it, a little act of kindness can mean the world to someone."
To learn more about the service opportunities on campus, be sure to check out the CLS Cougar Link Page.