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Volunteering at Scouts is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing at Scouts. Read more

Discover what this means

Make kindness pebbles

First suggested by The British Red Cross
Show how a kind message can make all the difference when helping someone and write one for a friend in need.

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You’ll need

  • Paint
  • Paint brushes
  • Permanent markers
  • Smooth rocks (make sure you don't take these from a beach, you can get them from your garden, a DIY store, craft store or garden centre)

Before you begin

  • Use the safety checklist to help you plan and risk assess your activity. Additional help to carry out your risk assessment, including examples can be found here. Don’t forget to make sure all young people and adults involved in the activity know how to take part safely.
  • Make sure you’ll have enough adult helpers. You may need some parents and carers to help if you’re short on helpers.

Setting up this activity

  • Prepare some suitable kindness rocks to show everyone or find pictures of some online to use as examples. 

Run the activity

  1. The person leading the activity should show examples of kindness rocks to the group. They should describe the kind messages on them and explain how they’re hidden for others to find.
  2. The person leading the activity should give each member of the group a rock and they should begin painting it.
  3. As the painted rocks dry, everyone should have another look at the example messages. If they take a while to dry, everyone could play a quick game.
  4. Some good examples of messages might be:
    • Be kind.
    • Be happy.
    • Be brave.
    • A friend in need is a friend indeed.
    • Don’t worry, be happy.
  1. Once they are dry, everyone should write a message on the rocks. The group could choose an example message they like or make up their own.
  2. Everyone should decide whether to place the rocks somewhere in the local community or whether to give them to someone else.
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.


This activity was about doing something kind for others and thinking about the difference this makes. Imagine that you found one of the rocks while having a bad day. How would it make you feel to find the kindness rock? Would it make you feel better? Would it make you want to reach out to other people having a bad time?

Tell the group to think about the rocks they made. What impact could the kindness rock have on the people who see it? Will it make a difference in the community or with your friend? How will the kind message help?


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.

Challenge the group to decorate their rocks while painting. Everyone can use different colours or patterns to make their rock stand out and brighten someone’s day.

If acrylic paints are unsuitable, try decorating rocks with natural materials, like feathers and leaves. Instead of pens, everyone could use paper cut-outs of letters to make their messages.

All Scout activities should be inclusive and accessible.

Everyone could choose an act of kindness that they can do for someone during the week. Use the example messages and the group’s messages to get ideas. Think about how the group can show others that they care and what they should do if a parent or friend asks for help with a problem.

The group could write kind messages on bookmarks and put them inside library books for others to find.

Everyone can choose their stone’s design and message, based on what’s important to them.