"Kindness is love and compassion in perfect harmony"
Whilst there is so much to be said about 2020 and the challenges it brought to so many, there is also so much to be said and celebrated about amazing amounts of kindness shown by our community.
Over a series of blogs we plan introduce to you some of our amazing community members who are inspiring kindness with kindness.
Today we would like to introduce our very first amazing community member and entrepreneur Ali Cooke, also known as the Kindness Queen by many.
Ali Cooke, Owner of A La Mode Events was hit incredibly hard in 2020. All her key events had been cancelled due to COVID forcing her to think outside her usual business activity that saw her creating her own label!
A La Mode The Label was born and Ali begun creating a gorgeous line of products with a focus on kindness. Not only did she create a gorgeous label, she also chose to support The Big Hug Box by donating proceeds from sales towards delivering Big Hug Boxes to local centers to Newcastle at Christmas time.
With the support of her label and kind donations from local businesses on the 21st and 22nd December, with her sister Wen, Ali was able to make two Big Hug Box deliveries to the Calvary Mater and Genesis Care.
We hope you enjoy getting to know Ali today with the following questions that she has so kindly and honestly answered for us.
What is your motivation to spread so much kindness?
"I just think if we're in a position to make life better for someone then we should. Especially at Christmas Time. I always think of my mum when we make these deliveries, she had her treatment at Calvary Mater but spent a Christmas undergoing bone marrow transplant in Westmead... it was a really hard time for all of us and I know something like a Big Hug Box gifted randomly would have been a welcome surprise.
2020 has been a year, a tough one for everyone but I didn't want it to shape the way I ended mine.. I couldn't donate as much as I would have liked with no events to be used as a platform and little income to donate personally but am grateful for the support of A La Mode The Label allowing us to make these deliveries and spread a little kindness, making 2020 a little brighter for some.
What is your most special delivery?
It was very special to make our most recent delivery with my sister Wen beside me and my friend of 40 years Rose who works at Genesis but has been on her own journey with cancer.
As always I just love the joy it brings to the patients at what is supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year. One that stuck with me from this delivery is the lady who said that us randomly gifting her a Big Hug Box was the most human she has felt since her diagnosis, for that moment she didn't have to pretend to be strong for her family or even herself but could just feel all the feels with us.
What is planned for A La Mode in 2021?
I have spent the last couple of weeks drawing and working on a design for the next fabric and am brainstorming ideas with even more local makers to deliver some exciting new products to the collection this year. I hope to find more opportunities for people to discover the label so that we can continue to grow and spread more kindness. And of course I hope to see people purchasing and donating towards our Random Act of Kindness Day fundraising.
The Big Hug Box thank Ali so very much for all her support and passion in helping us to spread Kindness, keep an eye out for more of her amazing designs and clothing to come out in 2021 by following her on instagram or Facebook "A La Mode The Label"
Big Hugs to you all! We hope that 2021 continues to stay kind for you all.