A Boy's Death Has Inspired Countless Acts of Kindness Across the World

In one community, heartbreak created a new way to spread hope and happiness.


Ben's Bells is a program started in Tucson, Arizona by a woman named Jeanette. It was an idea born out of grief. Jeanette had just lost her very young son, Ben, and found herself relying on the kindness of others to make it through each day. The favors, assistance, and compassion that Jeanette received from others sustained her through that incredibly challenging phase of life, and inspired Jeanette to start Ben's Bells.

"She wanted a way to give back to the community as a way to say thank you," says Jodie, a Ben's Bells Team Lead, "because it was those acts that got her through that very difficult time in her life."

Jeanette's idea was to bring people together to create one-of-a-kind artistic hanging bells, which would then be hung in public places. When someone stumbled across one of the bells, they would also find a note attached, encouraging them to "Take it home, hang it, and remember to spread kindness throughout our world."

Today, Ben's Bells can be found all across the United States and even outside of the country! Jeanette's wonderful idea, which knits together ideas of community and love with those of creativity and surprise, has touched countless lives and provided lots of reminders about kindness and compassion. We know that Ben would be so proud of his mom for the amazing program that she started!

This HooplaHa Original was produced by Lucia Nazzaro. Want to watch more HooplaHa Originals? Find them on our YouTube channel -- and don't forget to smile!

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