Larsen Jay, founder of Random Acts of Flowers (RAF) is a firm believer in the healing power of flowers and plants, especially for those recovering in hospitals from accidents and illnesses. 

After a near-fatal accident in 2007, Jay found that the flowers he was given by visitors  throughout his recovery gave him an emotional lift. On leaving the hospital, he realized that many fellow patients had not received any visitors or flowers, and he delivered his own flowers to them from his wheelchair. 

The memories of how this gesture touched those patients compelled Jay to create Random Acts of Flowers the following year. Since then, the organization has grown quickly - RAF has made about 100,000 deliveries per year since 2016, in Tampa Bay, Knoxville and Indianapolis.

RAF’s mission is “to bring moments of kindness in the form of a beautiful floral bouquet”. A visit from one of the organization’s volunteers, along with the flowers, brings a much-needed emotional boost to the recipients. 

In 2016 a University of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine survey found that close to 95% of respondents said the unexpected delivery from RAF improved their overall emotional wellness. And while 81% of those had not received other floral gifts during their stay, 11% also had not had any other visitors outside of the Random Acts of Flowers team. 

A non-profit organization, RAF accepts both financial donations and in-kind donations of flowers that are repurposed. This can include flowers that go unsold at Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day, for example, and by working with floral industry partners this ensures that flowers that may otherwise be thrown in the compost pile become a beautiful bouquet instead. 

They strive to also be sustainable, aiming to recycle 100% of the arrangements donated - that includes ribbons, wire, and vases along with the actual flowers. 

You can find out more about Random Acts of Flowers on their website, or you can follow by city on Instagram (Knoxville, Indianapolis, and Tampa Bay).