How’s it works. We serve teachers (by taking a special display of kindness chocolate, balloons, and other items to the school staff rooms in all of our local schools (5) in Tipp City. Dark chocolate is a huge hit. We will also create kindness baskets for Tipp City community offices, the police, and the fire departments.
We have created hundreds of Valentine Packs available for the people of our church to take as they leave the service. This year we are preparing red roses and vases we order in advance from a local florist and Dollar Tree. Dollar Tree will ship to a Dollar Tree near your area.
Every year we focus on teachers. We make their day the week of Valentine’s Day by delivering special Dark Chocolate, and Hershey Kisses to the school staff rooms early on Valentine’s Day. One year we purchased special cup-cakes. Teachers need appreciation and the outreach helps us build bridges with the schools, and also encourages their staff in a practical way.
Here’s how we set up Kindness-to-go and the outreach the Saturday before Valentine’s Day.
Our teens and children’s areas pack thousands of Hershey Kisses into small zip lock bags with our special “You’ve just been kissed!” or “Hugs, everyone needs one!” connect cards. (see samples above.) We also have instruction sheets to help guide the outreach.
The tables are located at all exits, red or black table cloths and fun balloons create a fun vibe on the weekend just before Valentine’s day.
People grab several of the bags, or a few roses in vases as they leave the weekend service. They take the Kisses or the Rose Vases to friends, families, stores, drive through food places.
A couple of years ago I went to the gym on one of my usual gym days. (My wife tells me it’s a good thing.) When I arrived I asked the receptionist, ‘Have you been kissed today?’ She smiled and said, ‘Nope, not today.’ I then gave her a pack said, ‘Well you’ve just been kissed.’ She laughed and exclaimed, ‘You’re from (she named the church) right?’ I replied, ‘Yep. We are kissing people all over the city this week.’
On the Saturday before Valentine’s Day, we head out to a couple of strip malls near the church. We take the packs of kisses and several buckets of carnations. We pop into the businesses and head to the customer service desk and ask, ‘How many ladies are working today?’
We then count out the flowers and Hershey packs…and say, ‘We are from (the name of the church) and you’ve just been kissed.’
Usually, some of the other assistants are around and join in the exchange. Often, a male worker will ask for a carnation for his girlfriend or wife. Some guys say, ‘Thanks for the reminder.’
Most people are open, curious, laugh and catch the vibe.
One group went to a high-end Spa/Hair place, all of the working ladies gathered to receive their flowers. ‘Who are you guys? Others exclaim, ‘This is so cool.’ Or sigh, ‘This will be my only present today. Flowers and kisses were also handed out to the ladies who were becoming beautiful-er.
One of the team noticed one of the ladies getting her hair cut didn’t receive a flower. So, being the sensitive, thinking person she is, made an extra special effort to find another team and grab a flower and run back to the shop…when she gave the lady the flower, the surprised and delighted lady exclaimed, ‘You’ve just made my day! Thank you.’
Really? Made her day? It makes me wonder what one of her days looks like? It makes me wonder if she was ever loved, or had a caring boyfriend, or had a husband, or is now connected to an uncaring guy?
What’s in a gift of a small flower and a pack of kisses?
I think serving others in a fun! It’s a creative way that sends an upbeat message to the people in our stressed-out world. Serving others often is a small action that sends a signal that says, ‘Hey, someone cares for you.’ The action performed with genuine love somehow touches the heart.
Bolder team members also ask, “How can I pray for you today?” As they pray they often hear His whisper about the person as they pray.
My friend Scott, says, ‘Agape love revealed… means my love is demonstrated as I serve others through the choices I make, and by the actions I take.’
Process for Valentine’s Outreach:
4 weeks out: have connect cards printed (www.vistaprint.com)
4 weeks out: order Hershey Kisses (snacc foods Cincinnati is a great place, or head to Target they have reasonable Dark Chocolate. )
4 weeks out: order 4”X4” zip bags.
4 weeks out: order boxes of Carnations or Roses for pick up
2 weeks out: have kids, teens, or a team pack the bags
The weekend of outreach: have packs placed at all exits
Valentine Outreach Saturday before Valentine’s Day
3 days out: pick up flowers, cut stems, and place them in buckets of water so they will be open on the day
3 days out: design maps with instructions and contact phone numbers
3 days out: 3 days out: gather Kiss packs and place in larger bags or containers for transport.
On the Day
Gather at 10am
Give Instructions then divide up into teams. Load up, and head out. Also, be open to God’s leading and offer pray with people. Go to shops; go to check out or customer service desks ask, “How many ladies are working today?” Count out Kisses packs and flowers give to workers, Say, ‘We’re from the (name of Church) and you’ve just been kissed or hugged today!”
After the project go to a coffee shop for download,