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Neighbor starts 'Wave and Smile Challenge' to lift up others

Sarah Cauley says a smile is contagious – the good kind of contagious. She hopes her challenge on Nextdoor to smile and wave at others takes off.

TAMPA, Fla. — Sarah Cauley loves her daily prayer walks.  It was during one that she decided to try and spread some joy by smiling and waving at passersby. 

While most responded in kind, she says some seemed down.  She wanted to lift those spirits.

Sarah posted in her neighborhood social network, challenging friends, family and neighbors to a “wave and smile challenge".

“The old saying is: ‘If someone doesn’t have a smile then give them yours’ and it just seems to let the other person relax a little bit and let their defenses down. The fact that you’ve just given them 10 seconds of your time is just so important,” she said.

She asked others to share what they were seeing.  She says during this time of social distancing, we could all use a smile.

Credit: wtsp
Sarah Cauley challenged neighbors to a 'wave and smile' challenge

“Well, it’s been really hard especially not being able to see the grandkids and friends and family, and I cannot imagine what it’s like for elderly or shut-in folks that live this way all the time. So, it’s been very difficult," Cauley said.

"If we all kind of accepted the challenge then we could get more people encouraged and uplifted. And that’s always welcome in the time that we’re living, and I just hope that this smile and wave challenge will catch on and kind of each one reach one if you will.” she said.

10News reporter Lia Fernandez took the challenge to her neighborhood in Bradenton and got quite a few waves and smiles.  It only takes a few seconds to lift up others who just might need it.

Take on the smile and wave challenge and show 10News reporter Courtney Robinson what you’re seeing.  You can find her on Nextdoor and share positive stories of neighbors helping neighbors through this.

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