NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - On Thursday May 9, 2019 Girl Scout Daisy Troop 45063, made up of 26 first graders from Allen W. Roberts Elementary School, established a Kindness Rock Garden at the Trailside Nature Center’s Sensory Trail.

The project started back in November when the troop celebrated World Kindness Day.  At that time, the girls were introduced to the Kindness Rocks Project. Megan Murphy started the Kindness Rock Project in 2015 when she wrote, "You've got this" on a rock and left it on a beach on Cape Cod. From there the movement has gone viral and has spread across the world. The purpose behind the movement is to create connections in the community and lift others up through simple acts of kindness. The girls in the troop painted rocks with pictures of suns, hearts and rainbows in the hopes that it would make others smile and feel good. Girl Scout Julia Gomes said, "I learned that the project can help people bring out their feelings and make them happy by seeing the kindness rocks."

After painting the rocks, the girls worked together with their troop leaders Mary Housel, Danielle Gargiulo, Kerry Filippatos, Jenna Badgley and Nikki Agrawal to find an appropriate location to create a garden for the community. In partnership with Trailside Nature Center Director Patricia Bertsch, they agreed on the Sensory Trail inside the Watchung Reservation. The Kindness Rock Garden is located by the central gazebo on the Sensory Trail, where a beautiful rock is painted with information about the Kindness Rock Garden.

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The public is encouraged to take a rock that inspires them as well as contribute their own kindness rocks so the garden is always full and welcoming to visitors. Chloe Mani from Troop 45063 said, “I hope the garden reminds everyone that we need to be kind.”

Brownie Troop 45146, third graders also from New Providence, led by Nicole Falk, Lisa Mundy and Katie McGurn also participating in establishing the garden by contributing rocks they had painted.  “As a troop, we wanted to show the Daisies how proud we are of their achievement by adding kindness rocks to the garden,” said McGurn.  

“I’m very proud that this Daisy Troop is so active in making a difference in the world, locally,” said Housel. “They’ve made changes in our town and our community and they show how a group of six and seven year old girls can make a positive impact.”