Kent Children’s University (KCU) is one of only 10 organisations in the UK to be recognised by a charity for its positive work on World Kindness Day on Monday, November 13.
The KCU scheme, which encourages children and their families to learn in fun ways outside normal school hours, received one of 10 ‘be kind’ LED signs, which were given out by charity People United to groups that promote kindness as a way of life.
Organisations across the country, including schools, hospitals, libraries, and community cafes, applied to the charity for one of the bespoke light-up signs by saying where they would put it and how they would use it to benefit their communities and spread kindness.
In its application, Kent Children’s University estimated its sign would be seen by more than 1,000 people in a year at County Hall, Maidstone, and at KCU graduation ceremonies at universities, as well as another 5,000-plus people via social media.
KCU told People United it hopes to be seen as a ‘hub of kindness’ and being given a ‘be kind’ sign would demonstrate its ethos, which is built on genuine kindness, warmth, friendship, acceptance and love.
The scheme, which often works with vulnerable children and children in care and has previously devised activities to tackle bullying, is encouraging children and their families, and colleagues at KCC, to complete kindness challenges as part of its #BeKind Challenge, one of the things it had to do to get a sign.
Examples of kindness challenges include baking a cake or making a card for someone special, doing a good deed for someone, taking items to a food bank, and creating a #BeKind pebble for someone to find.
A full list of 10 suggested kindness challenges, as well as more information about KCU’s #BeKind Challenge, can be found here.
Roger Gough, KCC cabinet member for children, young people and education, said: “We are pleased Kent Children’s University has been recognised as an organisation that promotes kindness and encourages people to think about others.
“KCU does a wonderful job of encouraging children and their families to take part in exciting and educational extracurricular activities and this accolade demonstrates how it also benefits communities by encouraging people to do things that will make a positive difference.”
The kindness challenges children and their families are being encouraged to complete are relatively simple but have the potential to make a huge difference to people’s lives.”
Kent Children’s University is part of the Skills and Employability service at Kent County Council. The scheme sees five to 14-year-olds, and their families, getting involved in exciting activities outside normal school hours.
It is run by Kent County Council on licence from the Children’s University Trust (CU Trust).
An organisation can register to become a Learning Destination, meaning it can ‘quality assure’ its provision with Children’s University so it can issue Learning Credits to children who visit the destination or take part in an activity while visiting.
Each visit to a quality assured destination or activity will see children earn credits in their Passport to Learning. Upon reaching national Learning Credit milestones, children and their families are invited to special graduation ceremonies at one of the three universities in Kent.
Join in with Kent Children’s University’s #BeKind Challenge on social media using #BeKind. Find Kent Children’s University on Facebook and Instagram and @K_C_U on Twitter.
For more information on Kent Children’s University visit www.kentchildrensuniversity.co.uk
People United describes itself as an arts and kindness charity and is based at Canterbury Innovation Centre, on the University of Kent’s Canterbury campus. It is supported by a number of organisations including Kent County Council. See http://peopleunited.org.uk for more.