By Luana M. Graves Sellars

Your Welcomed by Sonja Griffin Evans

 “Carry out a random act of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you.”

Princess Diana

Sam Christopher

 “Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.”

Desmond Tutu

The old saying of if you hear something once, it might be true, but if you hear the same thing over and over, consider it confirmed. That’s definitely true about Gullah native, Sam Christopher. Example after example and story after story, the kindness that Sam exhibits is always consistent. 

Described as a quiet and gentle soul, Sam might not yield a large footprint, but when he’s there, his presence is definitely felt and is the type of person that doesn’t believe in doing anything halfway. If fact, his efforts are usually 100% or more.  

Sam is a natural giver. If there’s something that you need. Just ask. A resident of Hilton Head’s Sandalwood Gardens, he’s known for being there just for the asking. When people need help, they ask and it’s done,” he says. 

Sam Christopher receiving the Volunteer of the Year Award from Peaches Peterson, Chair of the Mitchelville Freedom Park

Around the neighborhood, if you’re not feeling well or a single mother who knows that getting to the store for a few items is harder to do with the kids, if Sam is around, just consider it done. Even old or new residents can find an extra set of hands during their move, because “they might not be able to lift or move things, but if I can, I will.”

Volunteerism is also something that Sam believes in. If you’ve ever been to a Gullah Celebration or Historic Mitchelville event, chances are that Sam was there behind the scenes helping. His loyal service and commitment was recognized last year by the Historic Mitchelville Freedom Park for his continuous dedication to the organization as a Volunteer and named an Honorary Lifetime Citizen of Mitchelville.  When asked about Sam, Joyce Wright, Project Manager from the Historic Mitchelville Freedom Park says, “I’m sure that at this point what I will say may be repeating what ours may have said, and it’s all true. During my tenure at Mitchelville, I was introduced to Sam and told that he was available to help with odd projects.  Sam and I met at the park and discussed our first “partnership” at Freedom Day.  Sam was calling me an hour before the time we had planned to meet at the Park, and he was there waiting on me.  When I arrived at the park, he had already had all of the prepping done and was awaiting more directions. At that point, I said to myself he is a “keeper”. From that point to every event since, Sam has been there.” It doesn’t matter what the need is; Juneteenth, Freedom Day, Blues and BBQ, cleaning the park, special presentations, cleaning out our storage unit and helping with light office projects. I know that he will be there.  Even when we’re supporting other events, Sam would stop by and ask if we needed anything. There’s never been a time when Sam has said “NO”, even if he had obligated his time somewhere else, he would say that “I’ll be there a little late”.  

Sam is one of Hilton Head’s unsung heroes.  Always willing, always ready and “always on time with that meek smile”. That’s Sam.

Betty Days

Love and kindness are never wasted. They always make a difference. They bless the one who receives them, and they bless you, the giver.

Barbara De Angelis

The true mark of kindness and humility is found in someone who doesn’t even recognize the impact that they have on the people around them. That’s how Betty Days has always lived her life. Raised in the Gullah culture as part of a community that when one has, all has, for Betty, the act of doing for one another just comes naturally. 

Sharing stories or listing the things that she’d done for others is not important to her. “I can’t recall anything,” because to her, it’s not about taking credit, it’s only about being there for others. “When someone needs something, I help. I’m not one to boast about what I do. I’m just willing to help when I can, be it a ride or something.” 

Active in various ministries within her church and community, Betty consistently aids her fellow parishioners, regardless of the request. Even though she’s retired, she’s an organizer, quilter, the Burke-Ward family historian. For her, part of documenting the family’s history includes conducting workshops for the younger generation, to ensure that the family history is not lost or forgotten. Keeping the Gullah tradition of quilt making alive is another way of how she gives. Yet, for Betty, creating a quilt on request, and giving them away, to her, is how it’s done.   

Those are just a few of the ways that she spends her time. A member of the Bluffton Senior Center, she assists in enriching the experiences of the other members by orchestrating field trips for the seniors so that they can go to educational and cultural events.

Betty Days

For most people, the pandemic created a lot of unexpected challenges. Making sure that helping her neighbors get to the poles is something that she does every year, however, when the pandemic hit, she became concerned that people would have difficulty getting to the poles to vote. Starting with the seniors who come to the Senior Center, and then her church family and people in the community she began registering them for absentee ballots. Her efforts resulted in registering over 200 senior citizens and family members to vote in absentia during the 2020 Presidential election.

Masks and personal protection was also a need that Betty saw that she could address by making home-made masks to give to anyone who needed one.  That’s just who and how she is. Willing to step up and do whatever’s necessary. “I came from a giving family. It’s how I was raised; it’s my motto and in my DNA. It’s just me.”

When asked about how he would describe the impact that Betty has done in the community, Herbert Ford says, “Betty Days has been fully committed to serve as a resource for senior citizens. She is very involved in ensuring that their medical, financial, and overall health needs are addressed on a daily basis. Seniors citizens have come to rely on her for her willingness to be a resource for them.” 

“I’m kind to everyone. What I do is for them. It’s not for the reward, God knows what I’m doing.” And that’s Betty. 

Jimmy Campbell

No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.”


Sometimes life throws a lot of things at you, be it a repair or financial, eventually you might need the help of a neighbor.  Hopefully, your neighborhood has someone like Gullah native Jimmy Campbell, who says that from time to time, we need to be there to help each other and that “we all need to push each other forward.”

The Gullah community has always been one of doing for each other. However, sometimes we find that “no one can do it all,” but to Jimmy, “when someone comes short, if I can help, I will.” And depending on the situation, he’s the type of person who might just take the shirt off his back. 

Jimmy is one of those people who responds to needs just for the asking or whenever he sees them. “I enjoy trying to help folks so that maybe I can lessen their burden and lift them up. That’s what makes me feel better. It keeps me going.”

Described by Alex Brown as an “we are all in this together type of person,” from minor repairs around a senior citizen’s house, to providing money when he can or just simply giving someone a ride, Jimmy is happy to assist. One thing that Jimmy is very aware of is that as the Gullah community ages, he recognizes that there are only a few seniors left and likes to step up as he can. “When I can help them with something, I do. To me, it’s just a small thing.” But he finds that sometimes, “little things mean a lot when people are in need, but to them, it might be a very big deal.” 

Jimmy Campbell

Jimmy doesn’t like to talk about what he does or why he gravitates to be there for others. When asked to share specifics or describe the kindness that he exhibits to others, his first reaction is to talk about what other people have done; not the significant impact and blessings that he has given to others. “I like to be behind the stage and not talk about what I do. I don’t want everyone knowing what I do.” To him, sharing his time and talents isn’t something that he thinks about, he does it because “it’s just natural” for him to do.  

Apparently, kindness seems to run in the family. Jimmy’s son John Campbell says that he has learned so much from his father. “I wouldn’t be who I am today if it wasn’t for him. I’ve learned that it’s not all about just take, take, take, it’s about how you can give in life.”  

Jimmy might think that what he does “is how I get my blessings. It’s just me.” What he doesn’t realize is that everyone is grateful that we have him around.    

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