The 16th annual Project Teddy Bear has completed its goal of donating nearly 19 000 stuffed animals to children in need in Utah. They all got some much needed smiles for Christmas and New years, The Herald Extra reports.
The teddy bears and other stuffed animals were gathered by the branches of Bank of American Fork and Lewiston State Bank. Then the stuffies were given to the care centers which are part of Project Teddy Bear.
“Sometimes children come in with nothing but the clothes on their back. These teddy bears are a great way to offer them some comfort and safety when they com from an environment where that might not have happened”, says Alex Essig, Kids Place assistant and adoption respite supervisor for The Family place.
The official total of the donated stuffed animals is 18 831 toys. All of them were given to children in need for the 2015 holiday season. “When it comes to kids, there is nothing more important to us than to do what we can to help them find joy and happiness during this holiday time. We are a community bank and all of the members of the various communities our branches serve are very important to us. We want to do all we can to serve”, says Richard Beard, president and CEO of People’s Utah Bancorp, owner of Bank of American Fork.
Project Teddy Bear has been going for 16 straight years now and it only gets bigger and bigger. Stuffed animals really do help children feel a little bit better and feel some comfort even in their toughest situations. The organizers are already looking forward to Project Teddy Bear 2016 and are hoping they will be able to gather even more stuffed animals and donate them to children in need. The event will again be in December, so there is time to prepare for it.