A lot of people wish they could do more to help the less fortunate in their communities, but they don’t know where to start. One mother and son duo recently demonstrated how the smallest act of kindness can go a long way.
They decided that they would build a blessing box and put it in their yard.
A blessing box is a wooden box that holds nonperishable food items. The idea is that a person who needs food can take it from the box, and people who have extra food to spare or simply want to donate to the box can do so.
There is no lock on the box, no paperwork, and no personal interaction.
People can take what they need without having to feel embarrassed about it. They are popping up in neighborhoods all over the world, but this mom and son were two of the first people to make one.
Preston is only 6 years old, but he is proud of the box and knows that it is helping a lot of people.
He explained how it works:
“You put food in there for homeless people. Because they don’t have enough money to buy food from the grocery stores.”
Once the media got word of the family’s blessing box, more people started making them for their own yards and communities. Maggie explained how she was surprised at the reaction and how far the story reached. She said:
“I have heard from the UK. This morning it was mentioned on ‘Bobby Bones.’ My whole thing was to raise awareness and to help people along the way, and it sounds like that’s what’s going on.”
She and her son are both thrilled that so many people are doing the blessing boxes.
They hope that the idea continues to spread so that more communities participate and more people can be helped. They don’t want anyone to be hungry, and they know that these blessing boxes are helping many homeless people get the food they need.
“I think it is a new trend that is starting, just from all the messages I’ve gotten on Facebook and from talking to other people… Maybe it’s planted a seed, a new thing that would be available for other people. Some people have reached out to me about possibly putting one on college campuses or around schools, especially during the summertime when kids aren’t in school.”
The boxes aren’t just meant for homeless people, though; they can be used by anyone.
Everyone struggles and the same people who take items from the boxes are also the ones who put items back in on a regular basis. The mother and son posted a sign on the box that says:
“Take a blessing when you need one. Leave a blessing when you can.”
A lot of people in their community keep an eye on the box and make sure it stays stocked at all times. One woman who lives nearby explained:
“We will check it before we go to bed and when we get up in the morning, and it’s like completely packed full where you can’t even empty it, so it’s not just being used for people to take; they are dropping things off, as well.”
Maggie and Preston have learned a lot by putting the blessing box outside their home.
They learned that making a small effort can go a long way. More importantly, it can inspire people to help others, too. They wanted to find a way to help the less fortunate, and they did just that. Maggie said:
“It’s been more than putting a box out there and seeing what happens. It’s taught us so much.”
Who would have thought that such a small box could make such a big difference? The blessing box proves that even the smallest act of kindness can go a long way.
Watch their touching and inspiring story in the video below.
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