The You Are Never Alone Foundation, Inc., a non-profit, Vermont-based grassroots organization, is on a mission-its mission is to foster caring and hope from one person to another.
Founder Salley Gibney of Dorset has visited several area schools, including-most recently-Poultney High School. She appeared in conjunction with Tracy Gallipo, PHS guidance counselor, along with teacher Dawn Sarli.
The three women shared the task of handing out Gibney's unique wooden "caring coins"; the coins depict two stick figures shaking hands. The wooden coins are attached to a miniature card; one side is so inscribed: "You are never alone" and the other side reads, "Wherever you are...However you feel...You are never alone..." Both "to" and "from" salutations are included to personalize the cards.
"The Caring Coin is a simple, tangible reminder of caring. It is a gift of hope. This little wooden coin somehow brings a feeling of comfort, belonging, hope," Gibney says on the foundation's website. "Perhaps it's the wood; the wood is warm and smooth and of the Earth. Perhaps it's the message, 'You are never alone'. The Caring Coin came in a dream. One night I had a dream. I was holding a coin, a wooden coin, the wood felt warm and smooth. Engraved on the coin was an angel and the message You are never alone. I could feel the angel and the words.
"When I woke up, I looked for the coin. When I couldn't find it, I realized that I had been dreaming. I sat on the side of my bed thinking about the coin and the message. I thought, 'What a wonderful message to share...' It wasn't until a while later that I realized the message was for me too. The next day, I tried to forget the dream. But the coin and the message kept coming into my mind. I knew in my heart that I must follow this dream. But where do I start?