DES MOINES, IOWA (May 20, 2021) — COVID Recovery Iowa and the Kindness Rock project want Iowans to get out their brightest markers and paint-pens to spread joy and help raise awareness for mental health. The statewide effort is gaining popularity on COVID Recovery Iowa's social-media platforms. The group embraces the original purpose of kindness rocks: To cultivate connections within communities and lift others up through simple acts of kindness.

"We believe that kindness can spread through positive messages and collective activities in the community that can be done safely during the pandemic. During the month of May, in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month, we are asking Iowans to decorate a rock and write #covidrecoveryiowa on it and then find a place in their community to place the rock. Images can be emailed to and we will share it on Instagram, says Mandy Gesme, Specialty Coordinator for COVID Recovery Iowa.

COVID Recovery Iowa is for anyone who has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and living in the aftermath of the derecho. The program offers free and confidential virtual counseling, online support groups, personal support, fun activities, and referrals.

Iowans in need of personal support can contact the Iowa Concern Hotline at 800-447-1985 (24 x 7), go to, or call the Iowa Warm Line 844-775-9276 between the hours 8AM-2PM. A Spanish line is available at 531-800-3687.

COVID Recovery Iowa is also on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

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