Cuddle Bears for Vulnerable Children

Something really special happens when a group of crafters is inspired by a moving story.  They want to help.  And they do.

Cuddle Bear Project 8 at Sheep Thrills Yarn Shop Broward County 4725 N. University Drive Lauderhill FL (954) 468-5577 @sheepthrillsfl Caissa McClinton @artlikebread

At Sheep Thrills in Broward County, the Cuddle Bear Project has been a crafting focus and a source of purpose in the past month, and will continue to be so for years to come.  The charitable project began just a few weeks ago.  The process is simple:

  1. Knitters and crocheters lovingly craft sweaters for stuffed teddy bears.
  2. Personalized, handwritten note tags with encouraging words are attached to the sweater and the sweater is placed on a stuffed teddy bear.
  3. The teddy bear is then given to a police officer or child protection worker who will in turn pass the Cuddle Bear on to a vulnerable child in a difficult situation.

The Need

Unfortunately, when families have domestic disputes, there are cases where a child needs to be separated from his or her parents for safety reasons. Whether it is only for a few hours or it needs to be more permanent,  this separation can be a source of trauma for a child.  The teddy bears with handmade sweaters will be given to children in exactly this situation.  The hope is that they will find some comfort in these moments.  As the police officer gives a scared child a teddy bear, the child will have something to hold on to.

The First Batch of Cuddle Bears on the couch were a sight to behold!
The First Batch of Cuddle Bears on the couch were a sight to behold!

All of the supplies, including stuffed bears, yarn, and tools if needed are donated by Sheep Thrills.  On December 20, one hundred bears were donated to the local police and child safety workers for distribution in our county.  This project will be ongoing and was recently covered in the Sun Sentinel.

My Cuddle Bear

I personally took part in the Cuddle Bear Project and I relished working on this simple piece.  I crocheted each stitch with intention and tried to infuse the finished piece with good feelings.  It was wonderful to sit around a table with fellow crafters and for us all to be working with the same purpose in mind.  The conversation was wonderful and it felt good to be helping in some small way.

I made a cute accessory for that big, brown bear.  I named him "Mr. Bear Paws."
I made a cute accessory for that big, brown bear.  I named him “Mr. Bear Paws.”

Join In & Help Out

If you are interested in making a knit or crocheted Cuddle Bear Sweater, you can stop by the store for a free pattern print out.  You can craft in the store with donated yarn if you’d like!  We’d love to see you!

Free Crochet and Knit Teddy Sweater Pattern Links

Other possible Cuddle Bear Sweaters can be found for free online and include Teddy or Baby Doll Cute Cardigan Jacket, Poppy Cardigan, and Beary Easy Sweater in knit; and Seasoned Just Right, Teddy Sweater 3, Easy Sweater Pattern for 18-Inch Doll, and Animal Sweater in crochet.

If you are not close to Sheep Thrills, you could always start a project like this in your area!

As always, thanks for reading the blog! If you liked learning about the Cuddle Bears of Sheep Thrills, please share this post with a friend through social media, or better yet, give a good friend a call and meet up at Sheep Thrills! We’d love to see you in the store, so remember we can be found at 4725 N. University Drive in Lauderhill, FL 33351. Feel free to give us a call at (855) YARNS-4-U or check out our website at sheepthrillsfl.com.

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