When Ajay Relan, William Smith and J.D. McElroy made 100 sandwiches and 100 Christmas cards in his apartment, put them in paper sacks and handed them out to hungry people in Los Angeles six years ago, they thought they might be starting a movement to end world hunger.
“When you feed someone else, you’re feeding yourself,” Relan says. After the first event, the friends realized their mission wasn’t to end hunger. “We were all going through the personal and professional challenges, changes and doubts that everyone does and that cause you to withdraw,” he explains. “We all found that through random acts of kindness and empowering and inspiring others to do them, we were giving people the opportunity to be grateful for what they had and to be present where they were.”
And have fun doing it. Now that sandwich- and love-note-making and distribution events have taken place in 150 cities, the friends know it’s a way to nourish something much bigger.