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COOS BAY — The third annual Teddy Bear Toss took place Feb. 24, and the community response was overwhelming. Organizers hoped to collect at least 400 Teddy Bears to donate to the Bay Area Hospital Pediatric Unit and the Kids’ HOPE Center. Instead, 868 stuffed animals were collected thanks to the hard work of Southwestern Oregon Community College's Junior Chamber of Commerce and Education Club as well as the generosity of the community.

The stuffed animals were collected at SWOCC’s men’s basketball game against Chemeketa. Attendees who brought a new stuffed animal were given free admission. 

Then, during halftime, all of the stuffed animals were thrown onto the court and collected.

The colorful teddy bears, puppy dogs and other stuffed animals are now destined to serve an important purpose: comforting local children. The Kids’ HOPE Center supports families and child abuse victims through the provision of an all-inclusive center, where forensic child interview and medical examinations take place. Guardians and victims are also offered support navigating through the challenging legal prosecution system. Stuffed animals, snacks and other supplies are given to every child that visits the Kids’ HOPE Center.

Teddy bears are also a help to pediatric patients at Bay Area Hospital, providing them comfort when they may be going through a difficult time. 

Teddy Bear Toss 3

The whole load of stuffed animals would not fit in the Kids’ HOPE Center lobby. Several more boxes and bags lined the center’s hallway.

For questions or additional information, contact Barbara Bauder at 541-269-8543 or Jessica Engelke at 541-888-7308.