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Published January 08 2013

Areavoices: Concordia graduate gives back 25 times for birthday

Chantell Sampson ’10 wanted to do something special for her 25th birthday.

“I wanted to do something different besides the typical, ‘Let’s get together and have dinner and buy gifts that I don’t need,’” she says. “I love making people smile and I knew that helping others would be a great way to spend a birthday.”

Sampson decided to do 25 random acts of kindness on her birthday. With the help of some friends, she made a list of acts to accomplish and then documented the experience with pictures.

Some notable acts were leaving money at a bus stop and laundromat, donating toys to children at a local hospital, and bringing cookies to the police station and humane society. But Sampson’s favorite moment was giving $20 to a mother buying formula for her baby.

“The shocked look on her face was priceless. She couldn’t believe that some random girl would just walk up to her and give her money to help her and her baby,” she says. “I still remember walking away trying to keep it together as I started to tear up as well.”

Sampson, who now works as a Web producer for Microsoft Dynamics, says she tries to make an impact in someone’s life every day. Attending Concordia, she says, is part of the reason for this goal.

“Concordia really did open my eyes to a more worldly view of society and equipped me with a greater understanding and compassion for those around me,” she says. “I always try to help when I can because I know that no matter how rough my day can be, someone out there has it a lot worse and that I should instead be thankful for all that I do have.”

She shared pictures of her “25 Random Acts of Kindness” through a Facebook album and has received a lot of positive feedback through likes, comments and shares.

“The response I got from people was overwhelmingly positive,” she says. “It was honestly the best experience of my life.”