Their renown is due to the gifts and random acts of kindness the girls distributed among their hometown over the silly season. Candace says the idea came to her on a drive home while listening to Regan and Casey talk.
“It was the 1st December and it was niggling me that they were already asking for Christmas presents,” she says. “I wanted them to understand that it wasn’t all about getting things – that the best things about Christmas are family, good food and great company.”
Candace decided it was important for the girls to realise that kindness to others, no matter how small, makes a difference to the way people think and has the power to change lives for the better.
She discussed this with her husband Richard, checked out the Mental Health Foundation’s Forget the Bling and came up with a few ideas.
Candace, Regan and Casey began planning small Christmas surprises for organisations and individuals that do great things for the Tokoroa community – and then “if we saw someone on the street when we were walking around town and we wanted to make them smile, we would!” Candace says.
The girls left $5 on a vending machine for the next person to use, candy-cane-bombed all the cars parked in town, and took a chocolate cake, a fruit platter and a few other gifts in to the local Child Youth and Family (CYF) office.
“The receptionist just burst into tears,” Candace remembers. “They were so overworked and over-stressed; they genuinely appreciated what we had done and had never had anyone do that for them before.”
“The reactions Regan and Casey got from people were perfect,” Candace says. ”They have caught the bug and want to keep giving to people.”
To their surprise Tokoroa residents got into the spirit too. When Candace returned to the CYF office to pick up the cake plate, the team had put together their own box of goodies for Regan and Casey to give to someone else.
“We got our hair cut the other week, and when we came to pay the owner said it was free because of our Christmas activity. We decided to thank them by bringing back chocolate and wine,” Candace says.
“Letting people feel that joy of giving is a good thing. It’s something you can do anytime, anywhere. Don’t over think it too much, just do it. It is just so simple – and addictive!”