Monday, January 6, 2014

Joanna's Pay it Forward

Pay it Forward 
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What is Pay it Forward?
               Pay it Forward is having to do some sort of Act of Kindness for a person or a group of people. It's simple, it doesn't have to be extraordinary or courageous but something that would either help or make someone's day. There are many people who are physically and mentally hurt and Pay it Forward is a great opportunity for people like you and me to help them in a way that's possible. In the movie, Pay it Forward, a boy named, Trevor, was inspired to help three people he had thought needed help or felt like their life had problems. By doing so, his actions would inspire those three people to pay it forward for another group of three people. That's the whole beauty of this idea. Throughout the whole process of making someone's day, we come to the point where more and more people are becoming engaged. 


What was your Pay it Forward act of kindness?
                 Our group's Pay it Forward act of kindness were four actions; shovelling (money donated to the Philippine Typhoon Relief), designing kitchenware items for our neighbours,  giving out treats for teachers, dropping candy canes with small messages in people's mail boxes, and a box full of candy canes with a letter for a daycare.

Why did we choose this activity?
                 We chose these activities because it was something we were all capable of doing. Throughout the whole process of managing each act of kindness, we learned that the most important part isn't whether how many people we've helped but the most important part was seeing people understand what you're doing and inspiring each individual to make a difference. That's what makes it even better. It's nice to make someone cheer up but how do you know if they learned anything from what you've done? We had also chosen these activities because it was very fair for each person in the group. Watching someone do most of the work while the rest do less lacks the magic of teamwork. This project not only helped us to stretch but to experience more on working as one and what we needed to go through to make a big difference. 

Who did you help? (How did the person or people react?)
                 We had mostly helped people around our community. The most inspiring moment we've gone through during the time we spent on the project was shovelling. Shovelling the sidewalk was probably something we would never forget. At the beginning, we didn't expect to get any money or even anything out of it. We weren't doing this to get money but to help the people and at least save some time for them. Since it was winter break, we had plenty of time to practically do anything we wanted but might as well use most of our time to shovel people's sidewalk. While shovelling one of our neighbour's sidewalk, we unexpectedly saw the lady opening her door with a $20 bill in her hand. We were so thankful but we couldn't accept it. We didn't really need any money since seeing her smile isn't worth any amount of money. We had told her about our project and how we were inspired by the actual movie, Pay it Forward, and we were surprised to hear that she also helps people to move forward. She told us that we could use the money for coffee or food but instead, we told her we would donate it to the Philippine Typhoon Relief. We were so thankful and we couldn't hold the excitement in. After that, we went to the next house. Another lady had opened her door with another $20 bill in her hand! At this point, we felt like tearing up. It was so inspiring and it made us feel like difference makers. She was very surprised about what we did and again, we told her about our project and how the money is used for something good. We felt really honoured for what they've done so we gave them a letter to tell them how thankful we were including the designed kitchenware items.  They will always inspire us to be better people and if little kids shovel our sidewalks in 20 years, we'll do the same thing.
                                                When did you do act of kindness?
               We started our act of kindness on December 29 and December 30th, 2013.

*Here is our video showing what we've done for each activity. We apologize for the length of the video but it was so hard trying to make it shorter because each moment we had was so special that we had no other choice but to add it in. Thank you and Enjoy!*




How did your act of kindness go?
                     Our act of kindness had gone differently then we thought but we were still able to stay on the road. Throughout the whole winter break, we had the tendency of changing and tweaking most of the activities. Each action wasn't very easy. Making a difference is harder than it looks but while we wrote letters, designed, wrapped food, and shovelled the snow, we would forget how cold it was outside or how long we've worked for because of the people we've inspired. It removes all the hard work because something great came out of it. Doing these activities makes you want to do more good things.

What happened?      
                    When we shovelled, we planned to have 2 people shovel while the other 2 people captured each moment through videos and pictures. We all took turns to make it fair for each person. There was a time where no one wanted to take videos or pictures and we all wanted to do was shovel. It was more like a fun time and we promised each other that we would do this again before winter ends. After shovelling, we earned $40. The most difficult part was the weather. As long as you had 3 pairs of gloves then you'll be alright. 
                    When we designed the kitchenware items, we used sharpies to create designs on the items. To make the designs from rubbing off, we needed to heat them in the oven. What made this so difficult was to heat it more than once. To heat a batch of items, it took more than 30 minutes. We wanted to design these items because it was something we haven't seen too many people have done. We thought of using kitchenware items because that's what a lot of people would use. Overall, it was a great experience to do something new.
                   The time we had making teachers a letter and wrapping their gift was very fun. It was hard figuring out what each teacher would want or didn't want. Some of the gifts included Hersheys, Reeses, Candy Canes, Nature Valley Bars, and a letter. We were practically walking everywhere in Walmart trying to find the things we needed and we had almost lost each other while we were there! This action was just our way of showing the teachers how special they are to be doing what they do.
                   The idea of giving a gift for a daycare was something we felt was important. If you think about it, some people forget the importance of a daycare. The workers who help and watch the kids are people who take the time to do a simple thing yet a big help. In the letter we had given them, we wrote a little bit about how Pay it Forward works and about the movie. We put a good amount of information for them to fully understand why we're doing this and of course, we told them to pay it forward as well. 
                   Last but not the least was to create a card with candy canes shaped as hearts with a message. We had taped two small candy canes into one heart on the cover and when you open the card, it briefly talks about what Pay it Forward is for and if they have any further questions, they could easily call our school. Some of the messages we had put on the card were, 'Have a Great Day!', 'You are Amazing!' and etc. The hardest part of finishing this activity was giving them out. On the day we gave each card to everyone's mailbox, it was one of the coldest days we had gone out. We were glad that we hadn't shovelled on that day. The first 5 minutes of being outside, your ears and fingers were already frozen. Then again, we knew that all the hard work would be worth it.

How did you feel?
                         After the whole experience, I felt really influenced to do more activities that will for sure make a difference. Personally, this is just the start and even if we work separately in the future, this whole project taught us how to stretch and become independent with actions I thought I couldn't have done. At the end, we gained confidence from one another. That's really important when it comes to stretching because there will be times where you feel hesitant on whether you should help or not but it is never about the journey but the destination.

How did the person or people react?
                      The people had reacted with big smiles. The two ladies that saw us shovelling their sidewalk were very shocked. Honestly, even if we saw people shovelling our sidewalk, we'd all feel this warm feeling in our hearts. After a hard day at work and coming home seeing these group of kids giving time to do something they didn't need to do takes stress off your shoulders. 

Did you ask the person or people to pay it forward?
                       Yes, we did ask the person or people to pay it forward. At first, we were a bit shy since it's our first time doing this project but after awhile, you gain that confidence after talking to all these people. 


Why is the idea of Pay it Forward so important?
                       The idea of Pay it Forward is important because we all learn something from it. I think that's what makes us better because if we experience something and we don't fully understand what you've done wrong, how will you ever prevent that mistake from happening again? In this case, we learned how to be more selfless, hopeful, and positive. At the end, the most important thing that matters is the love you've given. It could be family love, friendly love, true love, or etc. You will always be judged on how you treat people. We gain affection and care from this idea. Imagine a world full of people who cared each person, a world with no war, or no madness. Now, imagine a world full of people who hated one another and wore anger for every single day of their lives. It's a simple choice that leads to a big difference. Pay it Forward is the act of kindness that spreads and multiplies. The more people we help and are helped, the more we'll gain experience and pride.  

Has your act of kindness made a difference?
                       I think our act of kindness has made a difference. It may be a small difference but later on in our lives, those differences become bigger and brighter. Our act of kindness not only made a difference for the people we had helped but also for each of our lives. This will be something we could all get used to. 


                      I'd like to thank the teachers for being one of the first people to inspire us to become who we are today. I'm thankful for your help and guidance in completing this project. Thank you for unfolding the importance of Pay it Forward and what comes out of it. I'd also like the thank my cousin for coming with us to buy some of the materials and to design some of the kitchenware items. Last but not least is to thank my parents for allowing us to work on this project. Thank you for having to go through our loud laughs and giggles and yet support us through the days we needed help. 

 songs used   

iMovie Theme Music - Simple
Better Together by Jack Johnson

cameras used

Canon EOS T3I
Canon EOS 70D

editing software

Final Cut Pro

Other Group Members

Ceci Zhong                                Pam Joseph                   Allison Concepcion


Believe in the magic of Paying it Forward

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