Donating activity books to a senior center. Shoveling snow on an icy sidewalk outside a residence hall. Giving a stranger a free first-class upgrade on a flight. Brightening co-workers’ mornings with coffee and doughnuts. These were just a few random acts of kindness that occurred during the third annual Hogs Care Week, Feb. 23-28 hosted by the University of Arkansas Center for Community Engagement and the Arkansas Alumni Association.
Participants were asked to post their random acts of kindness on the real-time HogsCare.com website using #HogsCare. University of Arkansas students, faculty/staff and alumni posted 515 random acts of kindness on the HogsCare.com website throughout the week, generating 746,315 social media impressions. Posts originated from seven states – Arkansas, Missouri, Texas, Oregon, Tennessee, South Carolina and North Carolina – and Canada.
“Hogs Care this year was a success! We had more new Registered Student Organization partners than we have had in the past that sought us out to be involved and had great participation from campus,” said Callie Cole, graduate assistant for the U of A Center for Community Engagement. “The buttons were a hit with the students and many students caught on and did their own acts as well!”
Meanwhile, on campus student organizations gave out sweets, free Scantrons and “loving lollipops.” The Student Alumni Association provided Hogs Care thank you notes to show appreciation for the U of A facilities management staff.
“Hogs Care went really well this year,” said Hannah Bell, a Student Alumni Board member. “Last year, we passed out water bottles to students passing by in the union, but we were looking for something a little more impactful for 2015. When we told students we were making thank you notes for maintenance staff, we got a lot of great feedback. Lots of students were more than happy to take a few minutes out of their day to say thanks to members of the U of A family that are often underappreciated.”
U of A student Sarah Bradley was surprised and excited to receive a special care package from the St. Louis Chapter of the Arkansas Alumni Association. Bradley is the recipient of the chapter’s scholarship. The Mid-South|Memphis Chapter got into the spirit of Hogs Care Week by supporting Price Hancock, a huge Razorback fan who is battling cancer. Chapter members, as well as the Memphis-East Arkansas Razorback Club, gave Hancock some Razorback swag, including a football signed by Coach Bret Bielema and a baseball signed by Coach Norm DeBriyn. The chapter also donated time making burritos for the Urban Bicycle Food Ministry.
This year, the Alumni Association also took Hogs Care Week to a community level. The Alumni Association has many valued perks partners nationwide. This year, five lucky businesses in the Fayetteville were chosen to participate in some surprise events throughout the week of February 23 – the University of Arkansas Bookstore on Garland, Fayettechill on Dickson Street, Starbucks on Martin Luther King Boulevard, Puritan Brew Company on Dickson and The Mustache Goods and Wears on Block Street.
“We were honored to take part in Hogs Care week, thank you so much for including our business! We loved getting to pay it forward and see all of the smiles and happy faces on the customers we were able to take care of…thanks for doing great stuff in our community!” said Brian Bailey, owner/manager at The Mustache Goods & Wears.
“It was so great to be able to be a part of Hogs Care week!” Starbucks employees said. “Being involved in the community and making each person’s day ‘one day, one cup at a time’ is a core part of our Starbucks mission. Thank you so much for letting us be involved in such a fun experience!”
“We were stoked the alumni association chose to focus on businesses run by Arkansas grads, especially Fayettechill, to help spread good vibes throughout the community,” Fayettechill employees said. “I hope that all alumni can agree that this is an awesome cause and creates happiness through so many people, and we can only hope that momentum carries beyond #HogsCare week.”
“We were honored to be selected as a retail partner for Hogs Care Week 2015. On Feb. 26 Hogs Care Week came to our location and not only did the selected customers have fun, but our employees had a great time with the event as well! We are looking forward to Hogs Care Week 2016!” said Ali Sadeghi, U of A Bookstore director.
Visit HogsCare.com to see all of the social media posts from Hogs Care Week 2015.