Little Things You Can Do to Make the World a Lot Nicer

A few years ago, Debbie Tenzer was feeling overwhelmed by all the crises in the news. But rather than give in to despair, she thought, maybe I can’t solve our big problems, but I know I can do something. She realized that helping doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive or time-consuming. You can help simply by doing one nice thing. So that’s what she vowed to do, one day a week. Not every day – she says she’s not that nice – but once a week was a promise she could keep.

So she started a website,, and each week she posted an easy way to help people around town or across the globe (check out each week’s idea @ Good news traveled fast, and now Debbie is the leader of a worldwide kindness movement in more than ninety countries. By working together, Do One Nice Thing members’ accomplishments have included:

• Mailing more than 100 tons of school supplies to U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq, who give them to local children so they can study.

• Sending countless books to schools, libraries, and hospitals.

• Contributing numerous gifts for foster children, whose birthdays are often forgotten.

Debbie’s book, Do One Nice Thing, has over 100 new, easy ideas for small deeds that anyone can do (and includes explicit information on how exactly to execute the ideas). There’s even a chapter of nice things you can do in minutes without leaving your desk. ( “We mail school supplies, food, and books, but what we really send is hope,” Tenzer says. “And when you give someone hope, it makes you hopeful too.”



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