Actively Caring for People refers to any behavior that goes above and beyond the call of duty on behalf of the health, safety or welfare of another person. For decades, Dr. Geller, Alumni-Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Virginia Tech, has applied behavioral science to keep people safe at work and on the road by increasing the quantity and quality of AC4P behaviors.
In the aftermath of the April 16th, 2007 tragedy, Dr. Geller and his students initiated a culture shift at Virginia Tech—the Actively Caring for People Movement. Thousands of green actively-caring wristbands were distributed across the country to individuals performing acts of caring with the instructions to pay it forward, by passing on the wristband, when (s)he observes someone else performing an act of kindness. By using the wristband to recognize helping behavior, a tangible reminder of kindness is associated with the feeling of self- transcendence.
Imagine a world full of compassion - nations without wars, communities without violence, organizations without interpersonal conflict, schools without bullying, and families without abuse.
Everyone has the ability to care for others; all we need is a proactive approach. Most importantly, caring for others is easy. Little sacrifice or deviation from your typical routine is required. It takes only seconds to do someone a favor, but the contagious nature of such acts is undeniable. Through caring for others, as a community, we collectively possess the ability to make an impressive difference in each other’s lives. I challenge you, next time you step out the door, to make someone’s life a little easier. Bringing a smile to a stranger’s face yields a level of fulfillment that is second to none.
Want to Join the Movement?
The SAPS Process
Observe an act of kindness.
Thank the person for actively caring.
Pass the wristband and tell the person to "pass it on."
Share your story at AC4P.org
The Center for Applied Behavior Systems (CABS) at Virginia Tech develops and evaluates research-based interventions to target compassion and bullying in schools, at-risk driving and pedestrian behavior, credit-card safety in retail stores, and alcohol abuse on university campuses. Interested in ways to join our lab or collaborate on make-a-difference research? Read more on CABS.