Last year, Kay Lizon in Winnipeg got to thinking about of her deceased father, Gary Boittiaux, how he was ever so generous and helpful to all those who came into his circle. Gary was super kind, super loving and reached out regularly to not only those close to him but also to complete strangers.
In his honour, Kay started a random act of kindness. She invested hundreds of dollars, had some help from friends, family and co-workers and collected well over 800 gifts. On Dec. 23, 2011, she and seven elf volunteers set out to poorer areas of Winnipeg and randomly distributed gifts to complete strangers.
The reaction from the recipients was heart filled. The idea caught on, and this year, there were fundraisers and many more volunteers. Twenty-four elves helped distribute well over 1,000 gifts to the less fortunate.
On Dec. 23, it has become a tradition to pass along a random act of kindness; Kay calls it The Gary Effect. People participated from as far away as British Columbia, Mexico and the Philippines.
Kay hopes if only one more person reached out and touched another to make them feel good in what can be a sad time for some, the venture would be a complete success.
Kay Lizon is my niece, and I am ever so proud of her as she does her share to change the world in a positive way, starting in the heart of Canada.
— Ricia Adair