NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Volunteers comprised of retired AT&T employees pour their heart and soul into making stuffed bears by hand to be given to children undergoing traumatic experiences across Middle Tennessee.
The Nashville branch of the AT&T Pioneer Volunteer Network has been making Hug-A-Bears for over 20 years and have distributed over 8,000 handmade bears.
The Hug-A- Bears have been provided to the Nashville Children’s Alliance, the Tennessee Highway Patrol, Metro Nashville Police and Fire, Williamson County EMT, TWRA, 911 Bears for Schools in Nashville and Williamson County and more.
Bears have been used to comfort children after auto crashes, educate families about boating safety and as gifts for students at the Tennessee School for the Blind.
“If you see a blind child when we’ve handed him a bear with a Braille card and he takes his hand and reads what is on that Braille card and then he hugs you or she hugs you and thanks you… I’m telling you that’s what this is about folks,” said volunteer Gary Buchanan.
Next week, the volunteers will distrubte bears to the YWCA’s domestic violence shelter.