Marathon Monday, April 15, 2013, is a day that is etched in the memory of Bostonians. Lives were lost, families torn apart.
But something else also happened that day—something that cuts to the very fabric of human nature: brave, selfless Bostonians ran towards the bombs, not away. They risked danger to come to the aid of those wounded. On that day, Bostonians showed their grit, strength, and courage in the face of horror.
As a way to honor both the spirit of those who rose above on that horrible day and the memory of those who were lost, One Boston Day was created on April 15, 2015, by Boston Mayor Marty Walsh. This year, One Boston Day will take place on Saturday, April 15.
In the words of the Boston Athletic Association, “This is a day for individuals to come together, and a day for businesses and organizations to display their humanity. It will encourage random acts of kindness and spreading goodwill. It will emphasize activities across the City that encourage individuals to give back to their community. It can encompass a person giving up his or her seat on the T, hospitals hosting blood drives, children delivering thank you notes to their local first responders, and businesses sponsoring community service projects. This day is a chance for everyone to get involved in some way.”
If you are inspired to participate in One Boston Day beyond an individual random act of kindness, here are a few ideas for ways to get involved:
Martin Richard Foundation
The Martin Richard Foundation is very close to my heart. The foundation was created to honor eight-year-old Martin Richard, who died in the bombing. In the days after his death, a picture circulated of little Martin holding a poster he made with a message written in markers that read, “No more hurting people. Peace.” This photo was shared extensively and Martin became a symbol of peace.
Martin’s parents, Bill and Denise, along with his brother Henry and sister Jane, created the foundation with a mission to honor Martin’s message of peace through supporting education, athletics, and community. It’s a truly wonderful charity that supports many local causes.
This year, the Martin Richard Foundation will commemorate One Boston Day with a spring clean-up in Peabody Square and along Dorchester Avenue followed by a moment of silence at the Peabody Square clock at 2:49 pm. Click HERE for more information about volunteering. For more information about donating, please click HERE.
East End House
East End House is a community center applying a holistic approach to promote the well-being, academic achievement, and successful transition to adulthood of children and youth from under-resourced families in Cambridge and surrounding communities. Infant necessities, such as baby wipes, diapers, and formulas are greatly needed. Royal Sonesta Boston has partnered with East End House and donations can be made in their main lobby. For more information, please click HERE.
Operation Thank a Veteran
City of Boston’s Veterans’ Services and Mayor Walsh are asking residents to join him in delivering service packages to veterans. Participants will also have the opportunity to spend time with the brave men and women who have served our country. The event begins at 11:30 am with a 3 pm reception with the Mayor at the Cleveland Community Center. More information can be found HERE.
St. Francis House
Another great option is the St. Francis House Sneaker Drive. Partnering with John Hancock, the sneaker drive will benefit St. Francis’ Fresh Threads department, which distributes 3,000 pairs of shoes every year to those in need. There will be collection bins strategically placed throughout Boston on One Boston Day. Please visit the St. Francis House website for bin location information.
American Red Cross Blood Drive
If you have any other worthy causes or events, we’d love to hear about them—please share in the comments section.