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Be a top banana with a message of kindness

First suggested by The British Red Cross
Explore the power of kindness, care and respect in this fruity message writing activity.

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You’ll need

  • Pens or pencils
  • Bananas (alternatively, cut out banana shapes from yellow card)

Before you begin

  • If you’re using real bananas write an example kindness message on the banana.

Explore messages of kindness

  1. Show a picture of a banana message, or the banana with your example messages added. and Ask the group what looks different about the banana.
  2. Explain that this banana message is similar to one written by Meghan Markle, now the Duchess of Sussex, when she was visiting a charity in Bristol. As she helped prepare bags of food that would be given to those in need, she wrote positive messages on the bananas that would go into the food parcels.
  3. In small groups or with the person next to you, discuss:
    • Why do you think she felt this was a good idea?
    • How do you think you might feel if you opened a food parcel and found a message written on your banana
    • Would it matter what the message said?
    • Would it matter who had written it?
  4. Now think about what you would write on a banana and who you might write it for.
  5. Everyone can write their own kindness message using the banana template or a real banana. They could decide who they’d like to receive their message and give it to them.
Messages are pictured, written on bananas by Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, when she was helping to prepare food parcels to go in the charity outreach van during the Royal couple's visit to One25 charity in Bristol, south west England on 1 February, 2019. Copyright: Toby Melville/AFP/Getty Images
Logo containing the words Scouts for SDGs. The O in Scouts is made up of 17 coloured segments, representing the 17 goals.

This activity helps contribute towards some of the UN's Sustainable Development Goals. Find out more about the SDGs, and how Scouts across the world are getting involved, here.


This activity encouraged us to care for and respect others through the power of kindness messages. Think about the statement ‘A small act of kindness can change someone’s life’. How would everyone complete some (or one) of these sentences?

  • Kindness is powerful because…
  • Kindness can change someone’s life by…
  • Kindness has helped me by…
  • I can be kind by…
  • One kind act I will do today is…

Congratulate everyone for exploring such an important topic today and remind everyone to give their kindness banana to the person they wrote it for.


All activities must be safely managed. You must complete a thorough risk assessment and take appropriate steps to reduce risk. Use the safety checklist to help you plan and risk assess your activity. Always get approval for the activity, and have suitable supervision and an InTouch process.

If someone in the group is uncomfortable with writing they can draw positive images on the banana instead.

All Scout activities should be inclusive and accessible.

As a group, use the template to create lots of banana messages to create a display of artwork on the theme ‘Go bananas with messages of kindness’. The banana messages could be passed on to others in the community or sent to the British Red Cross youth engagement team so they can distribute them.

Combat food waste: If the group don’t want to give the bananas to an individual, they could reduce waste by using the bananas to create banana pancakes, or get really creative and go backwoods cooking to make Barbecued banana boats.

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