Brownwood teen spreading kindness through random acts hopes people will pay it forward


    A Brownwood teenager is turning a bad experience into something positive by performing small acts of kindness to strangers.

    Two weeks ago, Nicole Ortiz, 18, and her family launched a Facebook group called "Acts of Kindness in Brown County."

    Ortiz said that she launched the page a few days before she witnessed an incident at the Brownwood McDonald's.

    The Ortiz family family was waiting for their order to be taken at the drive-thru at McDonald's when they saw a truck filled with drunk men ahead of them and Ortiz said that the drunk men began making fun of a disabled person that was walking past them.

    "The facial expression on that man just went super sad," Ortiz said, trying to hold back tears. "We wanted to show it doesn't always have to be that way and that you can do something about it."

    As Michael Jackson says in his popular song "Man in the Mirror," change starts by looking in the mirror and Ortiz’s family did just that and they went to work.

    The Ortiz family's first act of kindness was taping a bag of popcorn on the screen of a Redbox machine.

    "I think if you give out positivity, positivity will come back to you," Ortiz said. "So, I try to do that."

    Some of the things that the Ortiz family has already done to brighten the lives of total strangers include putting coins in laundromat machines and paying for the meals of other people.

    Ortiz said that they all go as a family in the middle of the night so they can remain anonymous, but she hopes that through her actions, not just words, her nephews will live by the Golden Rule of being kind to others.

    "To show everyone that there's still kindness in the world,” Ortiz said. “One thing that can change everyone's day completely."

    The acts of kindness come out of the Ortiz family's own pockets.

    Ortiz said that she hopes that these random acts of kindness by her and her family turn into something much bigger.

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