Please Click HERE For a List of Participating Schools.

Enabling Specials Needs Kids to Enrich the Lives of Others

Because children with special needs are often in the position of receiving, Bear Givers Empowerment Program is designed so that these youngsters can become benefactors and experience the joy and pride of giving to others and contributing to their schools.

With the Empowerment Program, Bear Givers donates teddy bears to a school so that each student receives a bear to keep and another to give away. The children decide as a group where to donate the bears.

The teddy bears are personally delivered by the children or shipped depending on the destination. Some classes make personal visits to give the bears to senior citizens at residences or to children in hospitals. Other schools send bears along with handwritten cards and pictures to orphanages, cancer patients, military personnel overseas, charitable foundations, and centers for abused children.

Bear Givers makes a grant to each school which is used to facilitate the Empowerment project and to finance other school programs. The children understand that their participation in the Empowerment Program is also enriching the school.

The Bear Givers Empowerment Program enables these children to make a meaningful contribution to both the community and the school. They know the excitement and happiness they feel at receiving a cuddly teddy bear is being shared by someone else thanks to their own efforts.

“This is a unique opportunity, where the clients who are often the recipients of goodwill, are now empowered to enhance the lives of others.” -Derek Saker, Director of Communications, OHEL
“The feeling the children get when they take that physical bear and that card they created to someone else is very empowering.” -Joseph Sprung, Founder and CEO, Bear Givers
“I was proud to make someone happy. It made me feel good inside to help someone else.” -Taylor, Student, South Florida Jewish Academy
“Children from the school who give one of these bears away also get to keep one for themselves. It is a great way for students to feel good about making a difference in someone’s life.”
“Children can also be ‘benefactors.’ The program teaches children that when they do an act of kindness, they receive something in return. When children give away a teddy bear, they receive a teddy bear to take home. The principle seems quite simple, but the result is truly amazing. Children at SLCD identified charitable organizations in other states and countries. They wrote letters to the children in these other programs and sent teddy bears to ‘make other children feel better.’ Despite severe developmental disabilities, each child had something to say about giving a gift. ‘I sent my teddy bear to a little boy in Mexico. He doesn’t have parents. I have a mommy and a daddy. He must be very sad.’ Children’s insights are precious. Letters were then received from the children who received the teddy bears.”
-Long Island Press