Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

What a little cash & a little kindness are doing in North Dakota April 30, 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 5:00 AM
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My creative graphic illustrating Kindness Cash.

My creative graphic illustrating Kindness Cash.

HOW WOULD YOU like to find $20 cash?

In our neighboring state to the west, Starion Financial has dropped 650 Kindness Cash wallets containing $20 each in eight North Dakota communities. The project celebrates Pay It Forward Day on April 28.

Now, if you do your math, that’s $13,000 left lying around in places like grocery stores, parks, hotels…

The idea is to use that money to do something good. And the finders are, according to Starion’s website. Organizations like a cancer support group, a domestic violence center and a humane society have already benefited from this project.

Others are enjoying treats from appreciative co-workers. Those are all great choices.

But the story that touches me most is that of Olivia, who found a Kindness wallet under a rock in a South Fargo park. Little Olivia is giving the money to someone at her school.

Likewise in Bismarck, someone found a Kindness wallet, added $80, and left it for two lucky women to find at the Comfort Inn.

I love sharing stories like this that uplift and restore my faith in the goodness of others. (h/t Fargo Forum)

TELL ME, HAVE YOU ever been the recipient of such a random act of kindness? Or have you engaged in a Pay It Forward project like this?

I’d like to hear about creative projects that encourage people to Pay It Forward, to be kind to one another.

© Copyright 2016 Audrey Kletscher Helbling

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16 Responses to “What a little cash & a little kindness are doing in North Dakota”

  1. Marneymae Says:

    i’ve never participated in a formal pay it forward project, that is, beyond indigogo…
    but i’ve been on both sides, giving & receiving, at random-ish times.
    such a brilliant action.
    i mean, what if the dominant practicing economy was this gift-generosity model?
    imagine…!

  2. Dan Traun Says:

    Great idea North Dakota.

  3. treadlemusic Says:

    I’ve experienced nothing so organized but love this particular one!!!! In light of all the negatives that are in the (political) news lately, this is definitely a “breath of fresh air”!!!! Thanks for posting!!

  4. Littlesundog Says:

    FD and I have done “anonymous” gifts before… leaving cash for someone in need or perhaps gifting through a third party. There are many ways to help people and it doesn’t have to be about money. I can’t tell you the number of times FD has assisted someone in need with his plumbing, electrical or carpentry skills, simply to help them out when he knew they couldn’t afford to hire it done. I have always said if I won the lottery I would have fun sitting off a ways from the checkout counter and watch the faces of those who benefited from some unknown person paying for their shopping that day. The look of surprise and wonder is a wonderful gift you give yourself – that feeling from gifting love and kindness to another, feeds the soul in an unexplainable manner!

    • You are so right that it doesn’t always have to be about money. We each have talents that we can share with those in need. Thank you to FD for all the times he has given of his time and talents for others.

      You are also right that the giver often “gets” as much as the recipient.

  5. Carol King Says:

    Along the same line, I have a friend who seems to always be in the “right place at the right time.” Very often, as she is walking she finds $20 bills. It happens so often that it makes me wonder if this is actually random or if there’s something else going on. She never keeps the money but uses it to buy gift cards from a local grocery store and carries the cards with her to give away when she hears of someone in need. Few people know of her kindness, this isn’t a publicity thing for her. God bless these generous souls!

  6. This is a wonderful story! This story makes me remember when I was single-parenting my son and had zero extra money. Sometimes not enough. One day, after filling my gas tank at the nearby station, which took pretty much all the money in my wallet, I found a $100 bill on the floor on my way out the station door after I paid for my gas. I looked around and there was no one there. And it couldn’t have leapt all the way from the cash register to the doorway. So, I put it in my pocket and my kid got new pants and I probably went to the grocery store. I was in awe of that accident for a very long time. And I’m keenly aware that, at this point in my life, paying things forward is a must.

  7. Dee Bjork Says:

    Beautiful home made cookies from you, delivered to my work place!!!!!

  8. That is a really interesting story. I’ve heard about buying coffee in advance or for paying for the order behind you in a drive through.

    • I’m with you. I’ve also heard of paying at the drive through. KTIS, a Twin Cities-based Christian radio station (the only one I listen to) has drive-through Fridays. It’s always fun to hear the touching stories.


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