Be on the lookout for “Random Acts of Kindness” in the Gold Country area, as Gold Country Communities Society (GCCS) kicks off a new promotion to benefit businesses in the region.
Between now and Feb. 28, 2019, GCCS staff and board members will be randomly surprising people at participating businesses by picking up their tab. This could mean paying for lunch, treating them to a special purchase, or buying attraction passes, and will happen randomly throughout the area.
“What we ask is that people who receive the Random Act of Kindness pay it forward,” says GCCS board Chair Steve Rice. “That’s very important. We’d like the recipients and the businesses to track the acts on social media [using the hashtag #GCRandomActs].”
Each social media post made by locals and visitors will earn an entry into a semi-monthly draw offering Gold Country Gift Certificates valid at all participating businesses. The certificates are good until Oct. 31, 2019. More than $5,000 in certificates will be awarded.
The goal is to help support local businesses, who can take part in the program at absolutely no cost. Funding for the program has come from Northern Development Initiative Trust and the Thompson-Nicola Regional District.
Rice says that the idea for the Random Acts of Kindness promotion came to him while he was driving from Spences Bridge to Cache Creek. “Most of my ideas come to me while I’m driving between Spences Bridge and Kamloops,” Rice explains. In this case, he says he was inspired by a post and video he saw on Facebook, about a man who randomly pays for the groceries of someone standing in line with him.
“I saw the video and thought maybe we could do something like that but for tourism. I saw the looks on the faces of the people he surprised, and thought it would be really cool to capture people’s reactions and put them online.
“We have a great staff, and when I throw an idea against the wall, they make it work. They do the heavy lifting, put it together, bring it to the board, and then find the funding.”
More than a dozen area businesses have already signed up, and there is room for more to take part, with businesses encouraged to sign up early and be in from the beginning (although they can join the program at any time). All the costs and administrative details are handled by GCCS, and stakeholders will be paid back monthly. Businesses must be Gold Country stakeholders, have an operating business, and sign an agreement.
Members of the public are also being invited to nominate someone in the community who already does random acts of kindness. People can make nominations at www.exploregoldcountry.com/contest, and can also find the list of participating businesses. Any business that wants to sign up can do so at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/RAKGC. For more information, email email@example.com.
The program has been in the works for six months, and will be launched after the GCCS board meeting on Nov. 21. Rice says that people can expect the first Random Act of Kindness very soon. “We’re kicking it off with the new board, and we’re very excited about it.”