A Big Bear Hug for Pamela Holien-Ridlen
for sending us a dozen teddy bears to donate to the Haven House for our Bear Hugs Project.
The project helps gather new and gently used teddy bears for abused children, men and women. One of the rooms at the Haven House is called their 'safe room' in which the police and councilors talk with the abused victim to find out what happened to them. During the interview with the children, they are allowed to choose a teddy bear to hold and hug. This is in an attempt to give the child a feeling of safety and caring in hopes that the child will feel comfortable enough to tell the police what happened to them so the offender will be caught and charged for their horrible crime. After the interview, the child is allowed to keep the teddy bear they were hugging and the child is then sent to a safe location to live with caring relatives or family friends that will care for and protect them.
We noticed that during our tour of the Haven House they were terribly short of teddy bears. In our community alone they say they go through 250 teddy bear per year. Now just imagine how many teddy bears other Haven House organizations go through in larger communities.
Anyone wishing to donate a teddy bear, feel free to find new or gently used teddy bears and bring them up to Alaska with you when you visit us or mail them to us. We are also promoting people to donate teddy bears in their own community as well. We are hoping this idea will spread to other areas and communities around the world.