Teddy bear drive provides comfort to children in need

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Caitlin Tate

The donated bears make their way to the child advocacy center and onto the teddy bear wall. When a child comes to the center, their welcoming gift is a teddy bear to keep them company on their journey. “It’s one of the first things that kids see when they first come in the CAC…it’s a big first impression for kids,” Su Hartline said.

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Teddy bears have always been known to be a significant source of comfort, especially in times of need. Providing this comfort to children who visit the Child Advocacy Center (CAC) through teddy bear drives is a way to make the world they live in a little brighter. This need is satisfied through people like Caitlin Tate (12) and Su Hartline, head of the teddy bear drives and employee of the CAC, respectively.

The CAC provides comfort and assistance  to children who have been physically or sexually abused. this process, they choose a teddy bear of their own to keep and love.

“The Child Advocacy Center looks at the mental and emotional part of being abused,” Tate said. “They offer a safe haven for children, and every time a child comes in, they are offered a teddy bear.”

Tate is the host of the teddy bear drive at White Station. This drive has not come easy for her: it has gone unnoticed at White Station. 

“No one is giving bears whatsoever,” Tate said. “I have three donation boxes—[they are] empty. I do not know what to do. I have made flyers, I’ve told my teachers to tell students about it… and no one is donating.” 

These children are given not only a teddy bear when they come to the CAC: they are given hope, which is why the drives are crucial. Hartline  has seen this first hand. 

“It gives them something to remember the CAC by, and we hope that it does give them… comfort,” she said. ”We hope they start to gain hope for their future because they are able to start healing from their abuse.”