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About Seeds of Kindness

Jim and daughter Jill Bergantz.

"Never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever truly has."

“Seeds of Kindness” was initiated in 1994 by Jim & Judy Bergantz, then owners of Bergantz Nursery. It started with the premise that we could find great joy in being kind, in giving without expecting something in return. The Bergantz Family, on a single day in September and  with the help of many of their floral suppliers, distributed thousands of long-stemmed roses, free of charge to the citizens of Calaveras County.  There was a string attached, though.  For each dozen roses a person receives, one bloom could be kept but the other eleven were to be given away in the spirit of goodwill & friendship. This exercise was a resounding success!

On Feb. 7, 1995 the City of Angels City Council passed a resolution that National Random Acts of Kindness Day will be observed on Feb. 17 of each year, that all who live and/or work in the city of Angels will be encouraged to practice Random Acts of Kindness whenever possible, and declaring the City of Angels as a Kindness Zone.

“Kindness Day” turned into “Kindness Week” in 1996. Roses were replaced with light blue kindness ribbons that were worn by students and individuals, signed, and then passed on to anyone who practiced a random act of kindness. Bolts of light blue ribbon were supplied to area schools to tie around campus and community areas to celebrate Kindness Week.

In October 1996, Jim Bergantz participated in a National Random Acts of Kindness Foundation brainstorming workshop in Denver, CO. In 1998, Polly Runke from the “Stop Violence Coalition” in Kansas City visited to conduct an in-service Kindness curriculum training at Mark Twain Elementary School, resulting in Mark Twain’s annual Kindness Hero essay contest and kindness activities.  

Here is an overview of the model program “Kindest Kansas Citian”.
In 2000 Michelson Elementary School in Murphys joined the City of Angels in the Kindness project, and has continued to participate with their own activities every year.

Billie Westernoff presenting the Kindness Packets to the Board with Paul Westernoff and Roger Wold.

On Jan. 12, 2010 the Calaveras County Board of Supervisors unanimously passed a resolution to designate one week in February as “Kindness Week” and proclaim Calaveras County as a Kindness Zone.

Click here to read that resolution.


Above, Kindness week in Calaveras County. Photo: Calaveras Unified

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