K–12 program inspires students to promote compassion

K–12 Education School Programs’ COVID-19 Update, featuring Dr. Kristin Englund and Gabriella Bal, provided families across Northeast Ohio and around the country with the latest information on the pandemic, as well as pointers on how best to keep from contracting the disease. It also gave two local high school students an idea. 

“It became very apparent that the virus affects more than just the physical body,” says North Royalton High School’s Pankti Mehta, who attended the connected learning session this spring. Her classmate and friend, Sakthi Kasi, goes on to mention that “It also affects mental well-being.” 

To combat the stress of uncertainty and social isolation, which Dr. Englund highlighted as a prevalent consequence of COVID-19, the students decided to focus on the positive. They launched compassionduringcorona.org: a website that shares acts of kindness in an effort to promote positivity and a sense of community. 

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These “kindness stories” range from playing the violin for a neighbor to distributing food to the homeless. To date, more than 6,000 people from around the world have visited the site, and 98% of visitors completing an optional poll indicate being in a better mood as a result of the visit. 

“We were inspired to do something,” say Kasi and Mehta. “Despite these tough times, there are still ways we can come together.” 
 
To learn more or to share your own kindness story, visit www.compassionduringcorona.org.