Skip To Content

    39 Random Acts Of Kindness From Strangers That Changed Someone's Life

    Some people are too pure for this world. 🥺

    Humanity is complicated. With the way the world works these days, it can be so easy to fixate on all the reasons why people are "bad." But sometimes it's nice to have a reminder that the world is still full of good, kind people.

    NBC / Via

    We asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to tell us about a time where a kind stranger showed them compassion. We received many touching responses that might just restore your faith in humanity. Grab some tissues, because here are the most heartwarming stories:

    1. "I was waiting at my terminal in the airport and couldn't stop sobbing. I was so embarrassed, but so distraught. My dad had berated me the entire drive to the airport, and I couldn’t calm down. I was sitting on the ground crying, and suddenly, a teddy bear was in my face. I looked up, and a complete stranger was holding the bear and smiling. It was a gift shop bear with a lollipop that he had obviously just purchased. He handed it to me and said, 'Hope you feel better,' and walked away. I was so stunned that I stopped crying and actually started smiling. It was beautiful."


    2. "I have epilepsy, and my seizures are very rare, but pretty scary. Once, I had a seizure in a foreign country and hurt myself badly. I whacked my head and there was blood everywhere. I was alone and completely disoriented. A guy called an ambulance, came with me to the hospital, waited with me, translated for me, and stayed for hours. When I was given the all clear and was feeling more coherent, he got me a taxi and made sure I knew how to get back to my hotel. I barely remember anything about him and didn't even learn his name, but I'm eternally grateful. I really hope I expressed some of my gratitude at the time."


    3. "My family and I were on vacation, and we had just gotten into our car to head back to the hotel. Suddenly, a car sped down the road and T-boned another car, which then went flying into our parked car. My little brother and I were kids — I was 10 and he was 4 — and we were really scared. Our car was parked in front of a club, and people inside must've heard the commotion, because suddenly a bunch of drag queens came running out. They opened our car doors and helped me, my brother, and my parents out of the car."

    Drag queens covering their mouths and reacting with shock
    World of Wonder

    "They checked to make sure my parents were OK, then talked to my brother and me about our favorite things to calm us down. They also called 911 and stayed with us until help got there. It's been a long time, but I'll never forget those wonderful drag queens."


    4. "I was a senior in high school and working as a cashier at Walgreens. I had bought my prom dress a few weeks prior. A lady came through the line and was wearing a daisy ring, and the stone perfectly matched the color of my prom dress. I asked her where she got it, so I could buy one for prom. She said she actually found it at a yard sale a few years back, so she wasn't sure where I could find one. I was a little bummed, but it was no big deal. I finished ringing her up, and she left. Five minutes later, she came back in, handed me the ring, and said, 'Everyone deserves to feel beautiful at prom. I hope this helps you have a magical night.' She left before I could even ask for her name."

    "It's been 10 years and I still think about her, and I still have that ring. I hope she's living her best life."


    5. "My husband and I were in the mountains, and my husband decided to swim across a stream. He did fine going across, but coming back, he started to flounder. I dove in to try and get him, but I couldn’t reach him in time before he started going under. This guy randomly appeared and helped get him to safety. He saved his life that day, and before we could thank him and get his information, he had disappeared off the shoreline."


    6. "I had a pretty bad meetup with a guy, which left me feeling rejected and sad, so I was having a quiet cry in the back of an Uber. The driver, a fiftysomething guy, asked me what was wrong, and we started talking. A few blocks from my hotel, he asked if he could stop the ride and get me some food. He took me to a food truck, bought me horchata and the best tacos I’ve ever had, and we sat in his car and talked all about life. Not only did he turn my mood around, but he reminded me that kind and good people do exist, and boys who make you cry are not worth your time."

    Woman raising a glass and saying, "Amen"
    20th Century Studios / Via

    7. "I traveled to NYC for the first time when I was 21. I went by Greyhound just for a day trip, and I couldn’t find the stop to catch the bus home. I hadn’t planned to spend the night and was too poor for a hotel. I just wanted to catch the last bus of the day, which left within the hour. The customer service desk didn’t help, and I broke down crying in a corner of the Port Authority. A businessman got off a train, saw me crying, and came over to me. He asked what was wrong and if I needed help. When I told him what was going on, he said, 'Oh, I know where that is. I’ve taken that route before.' I thought he would give me directions, but instead, he walked me all the way to the bus stop!"

    "He chatted with me about my trip, made sure I had snacks or money for dinner, and dropped me off right at the stop. I got home safely because of him."


    8. "I’m very forgetful. After a rough day at work, I went to the mall. I was about to pay for something and realized I didn’t have my wallet with me. I knew that I'd had it in my hands when I got out of the car in the parking lot. I rushed back out to my car and found a napkin in the door handle. It was a note saying that I'd left my wallet on top of my car, and they'd put it in on the front tire. Nothing was missing, and it made my day! I wish I had a way to say thanks!"


    9. "I was super sick and bedridden and desperately needed my prescription. I was too sick to drive, so I decided to use the pharmacy’s delivery service. The cashier said my debit card wouldn’t go through (despite having money in my account), so I’d have to come in and pay cash. I broke down in tears. The cashier took pity on me and paid my copay out of her own pocket and got my meds delivered."

    Crying James Corden

    10. "When I was in kindergarten and my sister was a baby, we moved to a new neighborhood. Shortly after moving, my mother became very sick and my poor dad was struggling to balance work, taking care of us, and tending to her. He was really stressed, too, because Christmas was coming up. One of our new neighbors stopped him one day, and he confessed that he was having a hard time. On Christmas Eve, this neighbor and his wife brought over piles of presents for my sister and me, despite not celebrating Christmas themselves and barely knowing us at all. I didn't know this story until years later (since Dad just said the gifts were from Santa), and 20 years later, my parents are still very close with them."


    11. "I was an active-duty private traveling to my new station in Fort Bliss, Texas, in a crappy 1995 Ford Escort. In the middle of nowhere, the car died. A very kind man and his wife stopped their RV to help me. I didn’t have money for repairs, and was scared I wouldn’t make it to Fort Bliss in time and would be counted AWOL. The man turned out to be a mechanic. He towed my car to his house in Pecos, tinkered with it, and discovered it needed an alternator. It was Sunday, and the auto parts store was closed. The man knew the owners and called them to open the shop. He bought the alternator for me, installed it, and had me ready to go in a few hours. His wife packed me a dinner to-go, and they sent me on my way."

    "I made it to Fort Bliss in time to sign in. I have never forgotten their kindness, and I always try to help others to honor their willingness to help a complete stranger."


    12. "I’m a 2020 graduate. Since COVID-19 hit, we were unable to celebrate with parties or have a ceremony. My school sold signs that said something like, 'Proud of my 2020 grad.' A couple in our town found every house with those signs and left cards in our mailboxes congratulating us, which included a 2020 grad lanyard and $20. I cried."

    Crying and smiling Pam Beesly

    13. "I got into London during the early hours and needed to get to my mate across the river. Cab drivers are really difficult about crossing the river late at night, so I couldn’t find one who would take me. A homeless man at the station argued with a taxi driver until he agreed to take me. He wouldn’t take any cash and just said, 'You shouldn’t be hanging around here all night.' I got to my destination, albeit with a very grumpy driver."


    14. "When I was 14, I went to Japan on an exchange program. For some reason, the group was scattered across the plane, and I ended up sitting with two strangers. I was the youngest on the trip, struggled with social anxiety, and had never left the US before, so I was already nervous. I hadn't been warned about the customs forms, and I didn't understand some of the questions, which led to me having a panic attack. The woman sitting next to me only spoke Japanese, but she used Google Translate to comfort me, then walked me through the process."

    "Afterward, she went back to watching her movie. I didn't know how to use the TV, so I just watched her movie and tried to decipher what was going on. After a minute, she switched her movie to The Lion King and turned on English subtitles. She didn't say anything else to me, but it helped calm me down a lot."


    15. "The first time I went to Vegas, I was seated next to a lovely couple in their fifties who traveled there frequently. I was visiting a friend who had just moved there and we were staying off the Strip at a cheaper motel. My new 'Vegas mom and dad' wanted my first trip there to be special, so they arranged for my friend and I to come and stay as their 'daughter' using their points at the MGM Grand in their executive tower. It was awesome and made my first time in Vegas super memorable. Plus, they gave me gaming tutorials on the plane ride down! I’m still in touch with them, and they continue to be super-sweet folks."

    Grinning Alexis Rose
    Pop TV

    16. "One Christmas, I was standing in line at Toys 'R' Us to do a layaway for my two children. I had a cart full of toys, so I told an older couple behind me that they could go ahead of me in line since they only had one or two things. After they paid, one of them turned around and put a $20 bill on the counter. They told me to put it toward the toys and thanked me for being polite to them. I was so speechless that I was barely able to say thank you."


    17. "I have vertigo, and sometimes I have episodes that put me out of commission for hours — it's horrible. Once, I was at a concert by myself when I started having a really bad vertigo attack. I fell to the ground and was only able to prop myself up against a wall. While I was trying to find my vertigo medication, two girls took a video of me. They kept calling me a 'drunk whore' and laughing. Luckily, there was a group of people who noticed that something wasn't right. One was a nurse, and the other was a firefighter. They knew I was having a medical emergency, so they called 911 and stayed with me until the paramedics arrived and I was in the ambulance. I hope those two girls learned a lesson about assumptions after that day."


    18. "During my first trip to Portland with my now-husband, we decided to take public transit everywhere. It was about 9 p.m., and we took a bus to our Airbnb. While we settled in, I got a random message from someone on Facebook. It was this girl who found my license on the bus! She lived pretty close to where we were staying, so we met up the next morning. I was so relieved a kind stranger took the time to look me up on Facebook and notify me. I would've been screwed on my flight back without it!"

    Flattered Tahani Al-Jamil

    19. "I was walking to a restaurant in the pouring rain — no jacket or anything. An older gentleman walking a bit ahead of me with an umbrella saw me and asked if he could walk me to my destination (turned out he was headed to the same restaurant). He asked if it was alright first and said he didn’t want to make me uncomfortable because he had daughters and understood how difficult that sort of situation could be for women. I was so touched by it, and it’s stuck with me forever!"


    20. "I was in London a few years ago for a business trip. I thought I'd given myself enough time to get to the airport, but I didn't realize it was a national holiday there. A bunch of roads were shut down, and there was a ton of traffic. My Uber driver realized there was no way I'd make it in time to catch my flight, so he took me to a train station instead. He gave me exact directions of where to go in the station and what type of ticket to ask for in order to get to the airport."

    "I ended up barely catching the train, which got me to the airport just in time to catch my flight. I'd been traveling for work and away from home for three weeks, so it meant a lot to me that I was able to get home on time — all thanks to him."


    21. "I live on the opposite end of the country from my family, and on the way to work one day, I found out there had been a horrendous house fire at our family home. Half a dozen fire engines were needed to get it under control, and it gutted most of the house. I was at the train station sobbing on the phone with my husband because I didn't know what to do, and I had just come so close to losing my entire family. A random teenager came up to me with a chocolate bar and a pack of tissues, pressed them into my hands, and just walked off. I was so touched by that kind stranger."

    Kelly Clarkson crying

    22. "I took my 3-month-old son and went to visit my best friend an hour away. I had barely enough gas to make it there, but she told me she’d fill up my tank. By the end of the day, we both forgot, so I headed home without enough gas to make it back. Finally, when my car told me I had only 6 miles left, I found a gas station. I had $6 in quarters, and I figured that was enough to get me home. I had to bring my baby in his car seat into the gas station, and there was a long line. The man behind me was making happy faces at my son and cooing at him, which I shrugged off. Once it was my turn in line, I gave the cashier my quarters, put my kid back in the car, and started filling my tank. The man from the line came out and started approaching me. I got scared for a second. It turned out he had paid the cashier $25 so I could fill up my car!"

    "He said he’d seen his sister and his own daughter struggle to make ends meet, and he was just happy to help. I cried on the way home. I had been so stressed and scared, and he saved the day."


    23. "Once, after I’d lost my job, I was in line at the Walgreens trying to get my total under a certain amount. After trying for about 20 minutes, the cashier paid for everything, including the things I’d put back. I’d been feeling pretty hopeless, and that gave me a much-needed boost."


    24. "A few years ago, I was at the dog park with my dog. It was dusk, so we were the last ones there. He was running along the fence and managed to get part of his leg caught on a screw, which left a huge gash. He started bleeding and yelping in pain. It happened so quickly that I went into shock and started freaking out about what to do. A woman who was walking nearby heard him yelping. She helped me get him to my car and offered to drive us to the emergency vet."

    Stevie hugging David while they cry on the hood of a car
    Pop TV

    "I was crying and shaking so much that I knew I couldn’t drive, plus I was trying to keep my dog calm. She drove me there, and my dog was able to get into surgery quickly for stitches. I was so thankful that she dropped everything to help me and my dog. My dog ended up needing 25 stitches, but he was alright thanks to that kind stranger’s help."


    25. "One time, after I had been hospitalized for mental health reasons, I explained during group therapy that my family had purposefully forgotten my birthday. One of the girls in the group brought me a bunch of mini cupcakes and convinced the group to sing 'Happy Birthday' to me, despite my birthday not being for another four months. I think about her every once in a while, and I hope she’s doing well."


    26. "My mom and I went to Canada to celebrate my high school graduation. When we got out of the airport, there was a sweet couple clearly lost and looking for the car rental area. We pointed them in the right direction, and went our separate ways. Turns out, we were all staying at the same bed and breakfast, so we chatted with them during our brunch. The wife was a former teacher and asked what I wanted to do. They were so in awe that we were celebrating my graduation that they proceeded to give me $25 as a 'graduation gift.' It was such a pure act of kindness, and I hope they're doing well."


    27. "My twins were born via emergency C-section, so it was pure chaos getting into the OR. In the chaos, my husband realized that he didn’t have a way to take pictures of them when they were born because he'd left his phone with his clothes when he changed into scrubs. One of the nurses saw how upset he was, so she snapped a few pictures of the babies with her phone and texted them to him so we were still able to get pictures right away. Such a small gesture, but they’re pictures that we still cherish."

    Rashida Jones as Ann Perkins, smiling in her scrubs

    28. "I was at the grocery store on a hot day with my three kids, and I had promised to buy them frozen pops. They couldn’t agree on the kind they wanted, but I only had enough money to buy one box. I was holding baby necessities in my hands when an older man came over and dropped cash on top of my items. He said, 'They deserve a treat,' and then walked away. I couldn’t even hand the cash back because my hands were full with everything else. My kids did a happy dance when they realized they could each have their favorite type of frozen pops."

    "I’m sure he didn’t know it, but his kind gesture was extra special to me because my kids don’t have any grandparents. It just felt like the type of thing a grandparent would do."


    29. "When I was about 12, my extended family and I were having dinner out somewhere in Alabama. Well, some of the adults ganged up and teased me to the point that I retreated to the ladies room in tears. A few moments later, a lady from another table came in to comfort me. I’ve never been religious, but I was happy to let her pray for me right there in the bathroom. That was more than 30 years ago. I don’t remember where we were eating or even what I was teased about, but I do remember the kind lady in the bathroom."


    30. "My now-husband and I were at Best Buy picking up a mini fridge that we had saved for, opting for store pickup rather than paying extra for delivery. We tried about 100 different ways to get it into my car or trunk, and it just wouldn’t go. A guy saw our hassle, threw it in the back of his pickup truck, followed us to our house, and dropped it off. He even helped us bring it inside. We thanked him profusely, and he just waved and went on his way. It was something so small, but so meaningful."

    John Legend raising his hand in praise

    31. "When my brother and I were in elementary school, our eldest brother got hit by a car in front of us, and he and my mom had to be flown to the hospital. Another teenage boy was at the scene, and he went to the hospital with us and took care of my brother and me until my dad got there. I don’t remember much, but I remember him taking us to the play room so my mom could be with my hurt brother."


    32. "Before I knew I had severe endometriosis, I'd still try to work through my horrible symptoms. One day, I was halfway to work when I started to feel faint. I took an exit and ended up in a residential area. I parked near a curb and almost passed out. Once I built up some energy, I noticed people decorating a house across the street for a party. I dragged myself to the house. A young man noticed me and helped me into his home, where I asked to be deposited in the bathroom. I laid on the floor until I threw up. A few moments later, a woman knocked on the bathroom door and asked if I was alright. She brought me a glass of water and a towel for my head, then helped me to a couch in the living room. That’s when I noticed she was very pregnant. Her husband and father-in-law were setting up for their baby shower that was happening that day."

    "The family got me ibuprofen, anti-nausea meds, and made sure I drank a bit of water. The mom-to-be even grabbed my phone and called out of work for me, though I kept arguing that I needed to go in or I’d be in big trouble. Once I was feeling stable enough to drive back home, I left. I never even got the name of anyone in the family, nor do I remember the area, but they had a girl!"


    33. "When my mom and I went to Italy, we met a lady on the plane and started chatting. It was our first trip overseas, but she had been many times before. After a nine-hour flight, she ended up waiting almost an hour with us to get our luggage, even though she didn’t check a bag. She then helped us get some euros and showed us how to get on the train to Rome so we didn’t have to pay for a cab. My mom was only staying for a week, but I was staying for most of the summer with a study abroad program, so she gave me her number in case of an emergency."

    Smiling and grateful Kate McKinnon

    "If you’re out there, Gina from the flight from Toronto to Rome in June 2018, I think about your kindness regularly!"


    34. "My family was stuck at home due to a very sick family member (pre-quarantine), and we were about to run out of groceries. We couldn't leave the house without bringing the sick person with us, and they were very weak. Our neighbor, who we didn’t know very well, heard about our situation and stopped by after work with a big box full of groceries and fresh produce. It was the sweetest, kindest thing anyone could have done for us."


    35. "I took my two young children to the store for the first time by myself. I had a full shopping cart, a newborn strapped to my chest, and a 3-year-old trying to escape into a busy parking lot. Panic must have been written all over my face because a young man in a pickup truck deliberately parked next to my car. He jumped out, offered to load my groceries into my car, helped my daughter into her car seat, and returned my shopping cart to the front of the store. I almost cried with gratitude. He made feel like I could get through one more day!"


    36. "When I was 10, I was in a fairly horrible car accident. My very pregnant cousin was driving, my mom was in the front passenger seat, and I was in the backseat of the van. A car ran a red light and T-boned my mom's side of the car. We spun around, rolled, and smashed into the median so hard that we crushed the cement curbside. Luckily, we were all OK, including the baby, but I was in shock when we got out of the car. I was shaking, and a homeless person came over and gave me their hand warmers. It was December, and they likely needed those more for the days to come than I did."

    Ed Helms as Andy Bernard, crying


    37. "My dad and I went on vacation to Florida the summer before my senior year. My dad was super into photography, so he decided he would do my senior pictures for me. We decided to wake up early one morning and head to the beach before sunrise to try and take some pictures as the sun rose. Well, neither my dad nor I are morning people, so we were off to a rough start. On top of that, I’m awkward as hell and don’t know how to pose, so we were bickering. About 30 minutes in, a young woman approached us and asked us what we were doing. I explained, and she revealed that she actually worked with a local modeling agency. She not only offered to help me with poses, but stayed for the next hour to hype me up!"

    "I added her on Facebook, and we’ve kept tabs on each other for almost three years now. I’ll never forget her kindness that morning!"


    38. "I was traveling in Spain with my boyfriend when we decided to visit another city for the day. We got back to our Airbnb late that night and realized we locked the keys inside. To top it off, both of our phones were dead. We went to the nearest restaurant and asked for a charger. A lady noticed our despair and asked us what had happened. She offered to let us stay at her place so we had somewhere to shower and sleep. She waited until one of our phones had enough battery to text the Airbnb lady. She even let my boyfriend take her phone with him so he could use the map to meet the Airbnb lady and get another set of keys. She saved us from a very stressful, tiring day, and proved that good people are still out there."


    39. Finally: "I was on the subway, and an old woman grabbed me forcefully on my backside and pulled down my skirt. Apparently, I was standing there with the back of my skirt bunched up at my waist and my ass was showing. I was on a dangerous line, so I was forever grateful for that handsy granny."

    Woman saying, "thank you"
    Pop TV / Via

    Has a stranger ever been there for you in a time of need? Have you ever experienced a random act of kindness? Tell us your story in the comments below!

    Note: Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.