When my son Jeremiah was stillborn, I felt very alone. My 3 year old daughter couldn't understand why she never got to hold Jeremiah. I knew there were people out there like me and like my daughter, and I wanted to help them.
Project BEAR (Bringing Empty Arms Reprieve) was officially founded in 2011, but began with an idea in 2009 when I was pregnant with my son Vincent. I wanted to make a difference in the lives of people, who like me, had suffered the loss of a baby.
I bought teddy bears in bulk and donated to Holy Redeemer and Abington Memorial Hospitals in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. Not long after the bears were donated, my son Vincent was born. He passed away just 13 days later. After the loss of Vincent, I knew more than ever I had to continue Project BEAR. I ordered more bears and also donated some to Crozer Chester Medical Center in Delaware County, Pennsylvania. I have since expanded to most states in the US through partnering with similar organizations and hospitals looking to provide hope, support and comfort to grieving families.
Project BEAR gives teddy bears to anyone grieving the loss of a baby. The bears donated to hospitals are given out by the hospital staff - sometimes a chaplain, grief counselor or labor & delivery nurse. Bears have also been given out to individuals who have asked for them.
There is no charge for the bears and anyone can get a bear just by asking. It doesn't matter the type of loss (miscarriage, stillbirth, infant death), the relation to the baby (mother, father, sibling, grandparent) or how long ago the loss. Anyone grieving the loss of a baby is welcome to have a bear. However, we can only send one free bear per family.
Project BEAR is a 501c3 non-profit organization and donations are tax deductible.
Project BEAR Inc. 230 Bethlehem Pike, Colmar, Pennsylvania, 18915