As a result of my own near-death experience following an allergic reaction to a bee sting, I realized how quickly life can end and that we should enjoy every minute of every day. I no longer feared death, and I knew then that I wanted to make a difference in the lives of others…especially those who are dying and those who love them.
I completed a ten-week training program with a local Hospice organization. As a volunteer, I met 16-year-old Seth Bailey. Seth was diagnosed with leukemia when he was three, underwent a bone marrow transplant when he was seven, and needed a double-lung transplant to survive.
I believe that Seth and all the wonderful people who have come into my life have done so that, together, we can provide positive encouragement wherever it is needed in the world.
Why is the Bear Named Penny Bear?
Some people feel that finding a penny means they will have good luck, or that by making a wish and tossing a penny into a fountain or wishing well, their special wish will come true. Others read the words on the penny and think about how important the words “In God We Trust” are in their lives.
We chose a tiny penny and rainbow heart to symbolize the gifts our Penny Bears bring to those who own one: quiet and gentle friendship, a happy feeling of surprise, the comfort of hugging something soft and cuddly against your heart, and the reassuring trust that no one needs to feel alone during difficult times.
Penny Bears begin life as ordinary bears and are hugged into life by our caring volunteers. They are small enough to fit in hands that need something to hold, and large enough for people to hug, laugh, and cry with…a gentle promise that the whispers of their owner’s heart will be heard with unconditional love.
Since 1995 our all-volunteer, non-profit Penny Bear Company has provided people of all ages with a variety of opportunities to extend our mission of sharing messages of love, hope, and comfort through charitable outreach projects in local communities and beyond.
Something magical happens when people believe they can make our world a happier, kinder, more compassionate place in which to live. Shared dreams and goals provide a sense of purpose and become realities. When people work together to help others, strangers become friends, sadness and uncertainty are gently set aside for awhile, and a sense of accomplishment is found in the welcoming warmth and enthusiasm of being part of a team.
There will be many new journeys for the Penny Bears, and we welcome your interest and suggestions as we send them on their way.
Visit Penny Bear for more information.