Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.

William Arthur Ward

In late February 2020, the COVID-19 outbreak hit Seattle, and grew into a global pandemic.

By mid-March, Seattle friends Michelle Rudd and Steve Murch were brainstorming ideas about what could be done to help local restaurants. Michelle came up with the brilliant plan to buy Gratitude Meals for first responders, like hospital workers and firefighters. Neighbors Michelle, Molly, Kristy, Dave, Steve and many others participated in the fundraising and first dropoff of these meals, and learned a lot along the way.

We wanted to share these ideas, and also build a place for people to discuss the range of opportunities about turning gratitude into positive action. Here in Seattle Washington, and around the world, people are taking practical action within the current social distancing constraints to support first responders, teachers, staff at elder care facilities, delivery people, laid off food service workers, neighbors and more.

Lots of people want to help. But how do we best do that given the ever-changing public health guidance about avoiding large gatherings, etc.? What can be done if you’re shut-in, or of various abilities or means?

We want to make it easy to get involved, and scaled to just your desired level of involvement. When we get through this crisis, we want to give a #bigthanks to those special folks who went the extra mile. We also want to learn from this crisis and apply those learnings to other cities and future events.

Have money to donate? Great! We want to give you some ideas that caught our eye. Have time to organize a meal delivery? Great! We’d like to matchmake you with a group in need and share some tips about how not to introduce more risk or complexity (we shouldn’t be re-learning these all over the country.) Are you a teen or younger? Great! There are lots of ways you can get involved and do something constructive to help. We’ll be sharing all those ideas here.

There are at least seven psychological benefits of gratitude. Doing a small act to say thank-you does so much for the recipient and giver.

We are interested in amplifying your story, your creativity, your successes, your ideas and the key things to watch out for.

Join in, and share your ideas and stories! We’re entirely non-profit. We simply want to amplify your story, celebrate with you, and share easy tips, so more of it happens with ease.

  • Steve, Michelle and the wonderful #bigthanks team
    Seattle Washington, March 2020

PS: One week into this project, things are looking bright. Thanks for your support.