Growth Rings

Each ring of the Growth Ring symbolizes the continuous cycle of kindness. Kindness has an infinite potential and can continue, never ending, just as each ring represents.

What are Growth Rings?

205_gr2Growth Rings are hand-crafted to symbolize and foster mutual support, connection, and respect within the community. The simple act of giving a growth ring denotes a powerful message: ENCOURAGE KINDNESS.

This spontaneous gesture of giving supports and promotes further acts of intentional kindness. The giver and recipient benefit in many ways and thus contribute to a culture that encourages the spread of kindness at every opportunity.

Each ring of the Growth Ring symbolizes the continuous cycle of kindness. Not once does the circle have an opening or a break. Kindness has an infinite potential and can continue, never ending, just as each ring represents.

The Rings are decorated or stained and tied with paracord in unique designs by youth from local middle and high schools. A card is affixed with the message “Take Me! Pay it Forward!” and a brief description of the project. The Rings are given out within the community in schools, restaurants, the local park and bike trails, at churches, hospitals, community meetings and have been left at the top of NH’s Mt Washington and at other NH summits as an inspiration for people to reach inside their hearts to share a kindness with others!

How you can help!

Volunteers are needed to help with creating the wooden rings; community partners are needed to help with distribution; and donations of any kind will help the project. Lumber, cord, dollars, etc. are all welcomed. The Community Alliance for Teen Safety (CATS) has been committed to promoting a safer community since its inception in 1996. CATS operates by securing grants and donations of dollars and in-kind support. It is a nonprofit corporation recognized under Section 501 (C) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

In other words….. It’s a tax write off.

Volunteers Opportunities:

American Pride Woodworking has offered up its shop to anyone willing to get their hands dirty. No experience needed!! Whether you want to help for a few minutes or a few hours it will make a difference! APW can set you up at a drill press cutting, at a sander sanding or at a desk tying cord.

APW’s owner, Frank Leblanc is a member of the CATS Board of Directors and donates countless hours to the community. His shop will be the hub for production. However, anyone interested in production elsewhere is urged to contact him at (603) 489-8918.

Community Partnerships:

Community support is vital to the success of the project. We are looking for local businesses, organizations, groups, and individuals to help with distribution. The Growth Rings will be free to share. Hang them up, hand them out, display them, carry them, mail them…. A simple act of kindness can really turn things around for someone. Sometimes a smile is all someone needs to keep moving forward. Help us make kindness a priority in our community and beyond!


Students from the Fostering Student Connections (FSC) peer support group at Pinkerton Academy have provided inspiration and creativity for the project as well as hands on help assembling and decorating. The community has faced the tragic loss of lives to opiate overdoses and car crashes and we wanted to rekindle hope. A big thank you to FSC students  who helped design logos and art to support the project!

Serve with Liberty volunteers have helped over several years to fill the growth rings supply box with more cut, sanded and finished rings. A big thank you to the Serve with Liberty crews for their support!

The L. S. Starrett Company in Athol, Ma generously donated a drill press – the essential tool to get the project started!

Many others have stopped by the shop to help fill the supply box- we are grateful for everyone’s support!


We are looking for materials such as: scrap wood, sandpaper, finishes, cord, string, etc. Anything helps. Dollar donations can also be made to the address below. Not expected but much appreciated.

Community Alliance for Teen Safety
ATTN: Growth Rings
PO Box 1225, 1 Hood Road
Derry, NH 03038-6225
(603) 505-5115 Cell – Sue Centner, Director