“Someone cares about me, I must matter…”
No one can imagine the devastation of losing everything you own as a result of a disaster. Where to turn…what to do. At times like these, knowing you are not alone, someone cares means more than one can imagine. The little wooden Caring Coins are little gifts of hope for survivors of these disasters. They are tangible reminders that someone cares.
Caring Coins go to Puerto Rico following hurricanes Irma and Maria
“We do what we have to do…we have candles and flashlights.”
—a survivor in Puerto Rico
The devastation following hurricanes Irma and Maria was unimaginable. Families were without electricity and some without water for over 100 days. First Responders and FEMA came from around the country to help with the recovery reminding us that we are all part of one human family.
Caring Coins with the cards signed by children and adults in Vermont reminded survivors and volunteers they were not alone. The smiles, hugs and some tears of the recipients of the Caring Coins reinforced how a simple act of caring can bring hope.
Caring Coins for the Families in Marysville, Washington
“The Caring Coins were delivered in person…We are so grateful! Some of the coins will be given to counselors for kids that are having the toughest time. The colored papers on that wall in this picture represent every donation or gift of help in the last 3 weeks. You Are Never Alone Foundation will be added to the wall! Thank you all again for caring and for remembering us.”
The shooting at Pilchuck High School in Marysville, Washington was a nightmare. People around the country wanted to do something to help the students, teachers and families during this horrific time. Students at Long Trail School in Dorset, Vermont signed cards that were attached to Caring Coins that they sent to Pilchuck High School as reminders that they cared about those surviving the shooting tragedy there. They received the following response:
A Little Girl and her Dad following the bombing in Boston
“I was riding on the T in Boston a few days following the Boston Marathon. He had not finished the race that day because of the bombings. He decided that he had to finish the race, so he had gone back to the place where he had stopped and finished the race. His daughter was so proud of him that she put a medal around his neck. I had one Caring Coin with me which I gave to the little girl…Her dad put the Caring Coin around his daughter’s neck…”
—a student volunteer for the YANAF (You Are Never Alone Foundation) shared this story following the bombing at the Boston Marathon
Families of the 19 Firefighters Who Died in Arizona
“The firefighters and the families of our fallen firefighters were very appreciative, especially because they were signed by the children and youth so far away who were thinking of them.”
YANAF volunteers in Arizona shared Caring Coins with cards signed by children and youth in Vermont with the families of the 19 firefighters from Granite Mountain IHC Crew 7 who died at the Yarnell Fire Last Alarm on 6/30/2013. They responded.
The Sandy Hook Community
“We are touched by the outpouring of love by you and your students and people around the world. We are especially grateful for the little wooden coins with the message “You are never alone” Please continue to keep us in your prayers.”
The faculty and students of Burr and Burton Academy in Manchester, Vermont signed “Me to You” cards with messages of caring for the students at Sandy Hook School and the families of those deceased.
Hurricane Sandy Survivors
“We have been through so much and lost everything: the mere fact that someone care means more than you’ll ever know…”
The devastation of Hurricane Sandy was unimaginable…people came together to help the survivors. Over 4500 Caring Coins with cards in bright colors signed by students, faculty, church congregations and many others were hand delivered to survivors, volunteers and National Guard troops in the Rockaways, Breezy Point, Staten Island and New Jersey by YANAF volunteers who wrote, “Meeting so many amazing people, both survivors and volunteers of all ages was a very humbling and sobering experience for us. Thank you to everyone who joined us in reminding the survivors of hurricane Sandy that we care.”
“Someone Cares About Me, I Must Matter…”
These words of a Hurricane Katrina survivor after receiving a Caring Coin and a hug express the feelings of the recipients of over 5500 survivors who personally received a Caring Coin from a volunteer from Vermont. Many individuals, churches, businesses and organizations participated by signing Me to You cards that were attached to Caring Coins and hand delivered by volunteers to survivors of hurricane Katrina reminding the survivors that they cared. The Caring Coins with the cards were placed around the necks of the survivors in churches, recreation centers, and the Salvation Army Distribution Center. Each coin was accompanied with a hug. The response was amazing. Each hug was returned.
“It is difficult to put into words the impact of seeing so many people of all ages, of different races, religions, and economic backgrounds with plastic bags containing all their earthly possessions. There were rows upon rows of cots, in large recreation areas and halls. All had stories of destroyed homes, lost family members, friends and pets, no place to go, and no jobs. You could see it in their eyes. But although they had lost so much, they could still smile through such adversity. They were so grateful that someone cared about them. Their gratitude touched each of us.”