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Penn Township family plants 'kindness' rocks

Joe Napsha
| Tuesday, May 8, 2018, 4:48 p.m.
The Prosdocimo children with the rocks they have painted (from left): Mia, Rocco and Kayla
The Prosdocimo children with the rocks they have painted (from left): Mia, Rocco and Kayla
Mia and Kayla Prosdocimo painting rocks.
Mia and Kayla Prosdocimo painting rocks.
Rocks painted by Prosdocimo family
Rocks painted by Prosdocimo family

A Penn Township family is hoping that people finding the more than 50 rocks they painted with uplifting and inspirational messages and dropped in parks, schools and other locations in the community.

“We're hoping that people find them and are inspired by them. It is our hope that other families and community members will paint their own (kindness) rocks with their own words and continue to spread the kind messages throughout our community” said Jill Prosdocimo, whose family created the Kindness Rocks project in the township.

Jill, her husband, Steve, and their three children, Mia, 9, Rocco, 7, and Kayla, 4, dropped the rocks in several different places, including Harrison City, Level Green, at soccer fields in Penn Township, and at Schramm Farms and Orchard in Harrison City. Some were left at school playgrounds “to spark interest from the kids,” she said.

“A lot of the rocks have been found,” said Prosdocimo, a teacher at Hempfield Area's Stanwood Elementary School in New Stanton.

Prosdocimo has created a PT Rocks Facebook page, which had about 500 members earlier this month.

“Many have already posted on our page that they will be making rocks with inspiring messages and contribute to this random acts of kindness project,” she said.

She was inspired to start the project when the family found the painted rocks while hiking in Duff Park in Murrysville. They were placed there through a Kindness Rocks project started last year by Elaine Yarabinetz of Murrysville, a real estate agent.

Painting rocks with inspirational messages and leaving them for others to find was started three years ago by a Cape Cod woman, Megan Murphy, who created the Kindness Rocks Project after returning from a trip in India. When several friends who found her rocks and reached out to her, she initiated a social media campaign that lives on around the world.

A Pittsburgh Rocks initiative was started in March 2017 by a Castle Shannon woman, and branches have been formed in Bedford, Crawford and Potter counties.

Prosdocimo said her family has seen the fruits of their labor.

“Others have now started finding and replanting the rocks,” Prosdocimo said.

Joe Napsha is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-836-5252 or

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