Painted rocks with messages of kindness to be spread around community

EVERETT —  “One message at just the right moment can change your whole day, outlook, or life,” is scribbled across a rock. This is the Kindness Rocks Project’s mission. Above these words is written, “Take one when you need one, share one with a friend who needs some inspiration, or leave one for another.” This is the Kindness Rocks Project’s purpose.
The Kindness Rocks Project has been a national movement since 2014. The project started as a hobby “that just went viral on social media and became a thing on its own,” said the Kindness Rocks Project’s founder Megan Murphy. The idea is simple, yet well-received, which is why paths of inspiring messages written, drawn, or painted on rocks exist throughout the country. “It has healed communities in so many ways,” Murphy said.
Healing communities is also part of Dawson Place’s mission, along with providing children safety and justice. Based in Everett, “Dawson Place is a child advocacy center and works with child abuse victims,” said Francisca Gatica, community engagement specialist at Dawson Place. “Currently, we are working on a campaign to spread awareness and let victims of abuse know that they are not alone.”
Dawson Place is hoping to achieve this goal this year on World Kindness Day Nov. 13. Dawson Place is bringing the Kindness Rocks Project to the community.
The rocks will be decorated by Dawson Place staff and members of the community. These rocks will be placed at different host locations including the Mukilteo Library and Choux Choux Bakery. The Evergreen Arboretum and Garden is also partnering on this project and will have “a majority of the rocks for the community to bring, pick, and share a rock,” Gatica said.
Most of the painted rocks will have Dawson Place’s website written on the bottom.
“We don’t know who will pick these rocks up and find the resource that can change their life,” Gatica said.
During the pandemic, Dawson Place has seen fewer families coming to the center, but “while fewer cases are coming to our attention, those that do are much more severe and intense in the abuse,” said Gatica.
She is hoping that the project will help to share the center’s resources and purpose. “Even if a family does not need our resources, they will know in case a family member or friend needs us,” Gatica said, “and in the process, the community gets sprinkles of joy and hope as we get through this odd year.”
Dawson Place is at 1509 California St. in Everett. Its phone number is 425-789-3000.