WESTPORT, Conn. --- With all that's going on in the world, Weston resident Aarti Khosla decided the world needed a little more kindness.
Since the presidential election, she said she's felt a huge political and ideological divide that hasn't abated. "The negativity coming from both sides of the political spectrum was bothering me and I wanted to do something that was constructive and hands-on," she said.
Two events in her neck of the woods propelled her to start the "Give a Little Love" campaign at her Westport chocolate shop Le Rouge Handmade Chocolates & Cakes by Aarti. One was the distribution of "Let's Make America White Again" flyers in a neighboring town and elementary kids on her children's school bus chanting "Build a wall."
"It was clear that we were sending the wrong message to the next generation by voicing our negativity and intense dislike for opposing points of view,' she said.
So, she took her heart-shaped molds and got to work. The idea is to spread good cheer via random acts of kindness by giving chocolate hearts to someone who has impacted your life positively.
"It could be a check-out clerk at your local grocery store, a senior at the senior center who you didn't know personally, or any other random person to show the world that we all are kind and gentle human beings despite our political, social, religious, ethnic differences and set a positive role model for everyone to emulate," explained Khosla.
She requested that customers send her a picture of their good deed on her newly constructed "Wall of Love."
Ten percent of all proceeds will go to a worthy cause each month.
So, far, the response has been overwhelming. More than 200 small chocolate hearts were sold in four days and the campaign raised $400.
The effort is ongoing -- Khosla plans to maintain it for a year -- as "We all need a little love." To that end, this artisan chocolatier has created an entire collection of heart-shaped products.
It should be noted, too, she recently created a hand painted chocolate portrait of "La La Land" for Westchester native Fred Berger that his mom, a frequent customer, hand carried with her to LA for the Oscars.
Le Rouge Handmade Chocolates & Cakes by Aarti is at 190 Main St., (203) 293-6106, www.lerougebyaarti.com/ .