The Bear With Me project provides new stuffed animals for emergency responders to use when they encounter traumatized children. Donated new stuffed animals are collected and then given to law enforcement officers and emergency personnel in the Greater Springfield, Massachusetts area.
Emergency responders distribute these stuffed animals, which have been placed in colorful hand-sewn tote bags, whenever they encounter a child in need of comfort. Such children include those who have witnessed violent crimes, experienced abuse, survived break-ins, accidents or house fires, witnessed the execution of search warrants or drug raids, seen a family member arrested, or experienced any other situation that could frighten or traumatize them. Children placed in protective custody or foster care also receive stuffed animals.
Springfield, MA Police Commissioner William Fitchet believes "that having stuffed animals on hand to offer these children helps officers tremendously. The officers are much more likely to be accepted by the children, and the children, in turn, are more at ease."1
Since 2004, Wings of Love donors and volunteers have provided huggable, stuffed animals to over 7,000 children in emergency situations in the following communities:
|West Springfield, MA
||East Longmeadow, MA
How You Can Help...
- Those who sew may like to make a handled tote bag (sample tote bag pattern). Cotton-blend fabrics work best.
- Donate a new 10” – 15” sized stuffed animal. All Teddy Bears and stuffed animals must be child-safe and washable.
- All donations can be dropped off or mailed to Evangel Assembly, 348 Stony Hill Road, Wilbraham.
- Become a Business Partner or Sponsor – please “Contact Us” for more information.
- Monetary donations are accepted and can be mailed to PO Box 717, Wilbraham, MA 01095. Please make your check out to "Wings Of Love NE", noting "BEARS" in the memo portion.
- Your donations are deductible for income tax purposes to the extent allowed by law. An acknowledgement of your gift will be sent to you.
Wings of Love, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization, EIN 26-3561726. Our office is located and shared with Evangel Assembly, 348 Stony Hill Road, Wilbraham MA. For general information email firstname.lastname@example.org. For the Bear With Me project email email@example.com.
1 Elizabeth Roman, "Police ease trauma with teddy bears," The Springfield (Mass.) Republican, 18 March 2009.