From Feb. 11-15, the Random Acts of Kindness (RAK) club organized a week-long program intended to bring smiles to students’ faces amidst the burdensome load of school work and pressure-cooking deadlines. The club held a variety of activities during office hours in the atrium, accommodating a wide range of interests by setting up board games stations, bubble blowing, friendship programs, and various other events. Furthermore, RAK decorated the school with reassuring messages to enliven the student body.
“I felt like it was an overall enjoyable experience to take a break from school and get to know people that weren’t necessarily part of my friend group,” said Louis Kim (10). “It was interesting to see how other people reacted to this type of event since I’ve never seen this kind of program be initiated before. It felt like a breath of fresh air to have something new.”
Of all the emerging activities available, one that especially struck students’ attention was a program called “Strangers as Friends.” Prior to RAK week, students asked to fill out an online form to participate in this program in order to form new relationships or strengthen existing bonds with fellow SIS peers. The students who signed up were randomly assigned a “stranger;” together, they were to engage in recreational activities to know each other on a deeper level. By promoting friendly competition, pairs of former strangers throughout the week had to play a series of games in the atrium in order to gain points, which later came to use as an advantage over the other pairs. The top three pairs with the most points through these games were rewarded with an exclusive prize. Regardless of the prize, “Strangers as Friends” garnered much attention from students as many participated with passion and willingness.
“It’s in the club members’ and executives’ best interest to improve the quality of student life in SIS,” said Carly Santos, high school counselor. “They really are trying to create a positive environment through even simple methods like blowing bubbles, and I always have admired their hard work and dedication for that. The ‘community strengthening’ they foster within school seems like a beneficial effect all throughout and its pretty evident to see.”
Aside from “Strangers as Friends”, students could stop by the atrium to blow bubbles as a form of relief and recreation as well as experiment with different board games by competing with their friends or even their assigned “strangers.” While the activities were provided in the atrium, there were encouraging phrases and messages around the HS building, including the sides of stairsteps, doors, and personalized messages on each student’s locker. Such notes included “You are Worth It” or a memo as simple as “You can do it!”. To promote RAK week, members of the club decorated the asphalt road up to the main building prior to the official week with chalk so that the students could view encouraging messages and drawings as they walked up to school.
“RAK members put in weeks’ worth of preparation for the projects, and it made me really proud to see everything that we were able to do,” said Eddie Ko (12), executive member of RAK. “It always made my day when I saw people playing with the board games or blowing bubbles in the atrium, or when people told me about finding our candies around school. Now we’re excited to begin preparing for our spring projects, and even though I won’t be here next year, I’m sure that RAK week 2020 will be even better than this year’s!”
RAK so far has been one of the most active clubs throughout the school year and has consistently pumped out events and different forms of projects to carry out their club name. In means of improving students’ lives even by the slightest, they have continued to implement certain uplifting programs for everyone to enjoy. With students participating eagerly with such programs, RAK has successfully promoted themselves and brought a smile to students’ faces.