PETALING JAYA: Even on its first day, the #StandTogether Kindness Challenge is already making waves on social media with nearly 2,500 people participating in the first “Kindness Mission”.
The Kindness Challenge is an interactive WhatsApp chat bot developed by R.AGE and U-Report Malaysia. Users receive Kindness Missions from the chat bot every day during National Kindness Week, which they then have 24 hours to complete.
The challenge has led to a long thread of empowering, positive messages on the #StandTogether Facebook page, as the participants aim to spread as much kindness as they can. Click here to read some of the comments.
WATCH: Nurul Izzah Anwar takes the Kindness Challenge
Law student Ravveneah Kalisvaran, 22, is one of the challenge participants, having heard about it through a friend before deciding to join in.
“I thought it was a great initiative to spread kindness and so I wanted to be a part of it to spread all that positive energy,” she said.
She was struck by the challenge’s first activity: being kind to yourself.
“I usually share posts in the hope of empowering the people around me but I think the first step for true empowerment is self-love. I feel more confident and I will continue this whenever I can,” she said.
Many Malaysians have already vowed to keep the kindness going all week, and are planning on inviting other friends to participate.
“I’ve already asked my friends to join!” said student Nurul Fadhillah Mohamad Zohir, 20.
“I’ve always felt unimportant and insecure, but after posting such a self-affirming post (as part of the first mission), I finally feel like I’m enough. The challenge has made me appreciate myself more, so thank you, #StandTogether!”
Even though the challenge was initially angled towards students, it has touched Malaysians of all ages.
Customer relations specialist Yeo Teck Ming, 28, has also gotten more friends to participate in the Missions because “it’s always best to spread kindness”.
“Even if you’re having the worst day, we don’t know what the people around us are going through. So it would be best to be kind to the best of your abilities,” he said.
Risk manager Ayeneswary Krishnan, 40, agreed, saying it was important to always choose being kind over being judgemental.
“Just like how we stood together to bring great change in Malaysia, I hope every one of us will stand together again to spread kindness and commit to complete challenges like this,” she said.
This is exactly the kind of impact the #StandTogether team had hoped for when they launched the Kindness Challenge, said U-Report national project manager Keith Woo.
“(This is) absolutely amazing. We're sending a loud message in one voice: a better Malaysia begins with us changing our tak kisah (don’t care) attitude to kita kisah (we care).
“Kindness begins with us. Ending violence against children begins with us. Stopping bullying begins with us. Positive change begins with us,” he said.
“There is so much more we can become as a nation, but we can only achieve it together. Sikit-sikit, lama-lama menjadi bukit is our reminder for each of us to do our part so that we bring about positive social change!”
Numerous celebrities and Members of Parliament have signed up for the challenge, including Lisa Surihani, Nurul Izzah Anwar, Khairy Jamaluddin, and Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman.
The challenge is part of the broader #StandTogether National Kindness Week movement initiated by R.AGE and property developer SP Setia.
As part of the campaign, hundreds of schools across the country will be organising “Kindness Projects” to help create a more positive culture.
SP Setia has also given out RM20,000 in grants to help schools implement their Kindness Projects.
* To sign up for the #StandTogether Kindness Challenge, click this link to be redirected to the WhatsApp chat bot: bit.ly/stchallenge2019
WATCH: Malaysia’s student-driven National Kindness Week movement
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