Christine Baker founded Walk4Good to inspire people to practice kindness. This presentation, first made to Vaughn College, highlights Walk4Good and how institutions from the inside out can create a culture of kindness.
2. Mission Statement
Walk4Good is a growing community of kindness-driven
individuals from all walks of life whose primary mission is to
inspire and empower people to practice kindness and to pass
acts of kindness onto others. We envision a world where we
are all a more engaged in our local communities and
personally deliberate in our willingness and intent to help
those around us.
3. The Numbers
In a recent Good Housekeeping study, 77% of students said they had
been bullied. Think about it. Out of every four students in the
study, three had been bullied.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
66% of all annual traffic fatalities are caused by road rage.
79% feel people are ruder to each other now than just 10 years ago;
42% say they encounter rude behavior every day.
We’re all under a lot of stress and feel pushed to the edge: one study
shows that 9 out of 10 of us are highly stressed most of the time.
Stress causes more than half of Americans (54%) to fight with people
close to them. (Source: American Psychological Association study, 2007.)
4. Wake Up
This is your wake-up call. Today. Right now.
We get one life. One go ‘round.
How are you living your own life?
5. We’ll walk to inspire you.
Christine and her dog Jessie
will walk the 2,180 miles of
the Appalachian Trail over 6
grueling months to inspire
YOU to make a difference
in your own life.
6. The Hike
Christine and Jessie will depart in early
June to the Appalachian Trail's
northernmost point, Mount Katahdin,
Maine. They will battle black flies,
ticks, raging stream crossings, every
imaginable kind of weather on their
journey, but they will walk
continuously until they reach Springer
Mountain in Georgia.
8. Kindness Counts
What does Kindness Mean to You?
• Helping others
• Being friendly
• What else?
9. What’s Pay-It-Forward?
When you pay-it-forward, you
don’t repay the person who
did something nice for you.
Instead, you do something nice
for someone else. For
example, if someone changes
your tire while you are
stranded on the highway, you
might pay it forward by
shoveling your elderly
neighbor’s walkway after a
snow has fallen.
10. How big should my
kind act be?
So how big does each good deed
need to be?
They can be as big or small as
you want, from opening the
door for a stranger or feeding
a homeless person to
volunteering. The aim is
simple: show someone in
one’s life kindness and feel
good about it.
11. When you dedicate a mile,
you make a promise.
Walk4Good needs 2,180
dedications. One for each mile
Christine and Jessie walk.
These dedications are free. Anyone
may make a dedication in honor of
a loved one (living or deceased).
In return for making a free
MILE 5 – BECKY KAPLOWE: This is dedicated to all young girls and women.
"You are beautiful, you are strong, you are important." You become what you
believe. This is in support of all victims of domestic violence. To the survivors,
thank you for showing me out of the darkness and into the light so that I may
shine that light for others to help them believe they are worthy of the light also.
MILE 15 – VICTOR VELASQUEZ: I would like this Dedication for My Brother
Ray or as he was called Papi Hoss. He was a Vietnam Vet a brother, uncle,
godfather, husband and so much more to us but most Important a dad. He will
not be here to see the birth of his two new grandchildren, but if he were, he
would be the best grandfather in the world like he was the best big brother in
the world. He taught me so many lessons that I carry with me to this so please
walk for My Brother We Miss You.
MILE 56 - AMY WERTHEIM: I dedicate a mile to the troops in Afghanistan and
now in Africa. If not for those brave men and women, the ground we walk on
would not be there for us. God bless them! How will I pay it forward? I will
continue to visit nursing homes and hospitals with my Therapy Dog, Dozer.
MILE 444: MARIO VEGA: I dedicate a mile to those students in school who are
verbally bullied and abused. How will you Pay-It-Forward? I’ll try to be nice to
everyone I see.
MILE 254 – ROSANGEL VENTURA: Please walk a mile for the homeless and
the lonely people. People who are lost in the world and don’t have anyone by
their side. How will you Pay-It-Forward? I will do more community service and
I will donate clothes and shoes for the people in my community.
14. The Power
Let’s do the math: 2,180 miles
= 2,180 dedications and
2,180 good deeds that touch
thousands of people, who in
turn will go out and help
That’s the power of
15. Lead by Example
Create a culture of Kindness at Vaughn College. Don’t just develop a
few programs, lead by example.
You must “become” kindness for young people. That means you
exercise this trait toward your students, but it also means you
exercise it toward others.You eat, sleep, and breathe kindness.
Other studies show that 80% of kids enter school feeling good about
themselves. By the fifth grade, that percentage has dropped to 20%
and by 12 grade it is only 5%.
16. Culture of Kindness
The tenor of most organizations is set by the leader and schools are no
different. Listen to the grapevine among staff and faculty, and the
head of school’s communication effectiveness will be evident. If
the conversations are toxic and negative, so is the atmosphere and
students DO feel that.
When the adults in a community are engaged in hurtful talk, it bleeds
into the way students interact with one another. Schools need to
take a look at their communication style, from the head on down.
Make time for kindness – from your staff, faculty and students.
17. Culture of Kindness
Creating a culture of kindness begins and ends with YOU.
Each one of you can go back to your desks and pretend this
was just a waste of two hours, that the time away from
your desks left you with nine fires to put out and little
time fix things. You can snap at your staff, ignore the
homeless person on your way home, be rude to the dry
It’s your choice. Which will you choose?
18. The Choice is Yours
“Never imitate. For how do you know that you may not imitate evil;
and he who imitates evil always goes beyond the example set, while
he who imitates good always falls short.”
-Og Mandino The Greatest Miracle in theWorld