There is an epidemic happening in Avanca, Portugal; an epidemic of kindness that first started with Lucinda Borges and Paulo Pereira. The couple once delivered more than 1,000 liters of water to overheated drivers who happened to be stuck in traffic one extremely hot day. To those who know the couple, they weren’t surprised about their anonymous gesture in the least. It’s just what the couple does. They have a reputation for kindness.
Lucinda, unfortunately, was diagnosed with a heart problem last year. It caused a major financial struggle for the two and they are hoping for a miracle that would at least give them some relief.
With even the basic needs not being met, the couple humbly allowed their daughter to spend Christmas at a friends’ home because there simply was not enough food.
Their story was featured in a Portuguese newspaper and that ignited a flow of payback for the couple. People they didn’t even know were suddenly contacting them and donating money and a whole lot more! From job offers and food to medical help and cash, the Pereira’s found themselves overwhelmed with generosity.
The Pereira’s and their 15-year-old daughter were simply amazed at what was happening. They laughed and cried all at once. In an interview with a local news outlet, JN, Lucinda explained, “People are offering us all sorts of things and words of comfort, it’s been amazing! I think I got healthier with so many manifestations of love.”
Lucinda’s medical condition was still in an exploratory diagnostic stage and was undergoing multiple tests. Part of the generosity the family received included medical advice, consultations at private clinics, and treatment from doctors.
Many donors offered their empathy and compassion by personally contacting the couple. Other donors went so far as to travel long distances to where the family lived so they could help manage the many, as in hundreds, of donations coming in. “It’s good to look at the kitchen and see so much food and be able to provide for our daughter,” Lucinda said.
“A few fellow Portuguese citizens from Camboja called to offer jobs for both of us. We’re studying the possibilities, but words can’t express how thankful we are,” Paulo added. Of course, Paulo’s wife’s health is the biggest concern, but the epidemic of kindness made things a little easier and offered the family comfort.