Kindness Bus visits the Heights

Bob Votruba on his bike in front of The Kindness Bus. Photo by Dondreya Allen.

One Million Acts of Kindness, an organization whose goal it is to spread kindness and love in the world to end violence, visited the Heights in May, and on May 15, the Kindness Bus was parked in Coventry Village.

Founder Bob Votruba tours the country in his bus along with his dog companion, Bogart.

"Three days after the Virginia Tech shooting, I drove down there and stayed for four days," said Votruba. "I saw so much pain and suffering caused by one person. I wanted to overcome the pain and hurt by spreading kindness."

"I sold everything I had and, along with Bogart, started traveling on The Kindness Bus," he said. "I believe in four values: kindness, compassion, respect and gratitude.

"The Kindness Bus has been running for seven years since the Virginia Tech shooting. I have been to many places, from Florida to California. I'm going to do a bike tour in London for 63 days, and after I come back I'll be going to Long Island."

The positive quotes written on the exterior of the bus were contributed by people who have come in contact with it.

"The Blue Bird [bus] was contributed by the Blue Bird Corporation after I donated the original bus to Virginia Tech," said Votruba. "It took me three months to copy the writing from the original bus on to the new one.

"I have ridden over 19,000 miles on my bike tours. You really find out a lot about yourself by spreading kindness. It is up to us to spread love."

Every year there are several events held in support of the kindness campaign: One Million Acts of Kindness Week, which takes place during the second week of February; Spring into Kindness Day, held on the first day of spring; and One Million Acts of Kindness Day, held April 27.

For more information about Votruba and One Million Acts of Kindness, visit

Dondreya Allen

Dondreya Allen is a senior at Cleveland Heights High School and a Heights Observer intern.

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Volume 7, Issue 6, Posted 10:31 AM, 05.20.2014