Teddy Bear Brigade


What difference can a stuffed animal make?

We have been asked this question many times.  The answer is simple; once we have helped meet the physical needs through food, water, and medicine, a stuffed animal gives emotional comfort to a child in need.

There are children in distress in every part of our world. Whether it results from a natural disaster or extreme poverty, children process trauma differently than adults.  Often, childhood trauma can lead to life-long consequences. When we send life-saving supplies to communities in need, we also provide stuffed animals to children who need comfort.

A stuffed animal is not just a toy. A stuffed animal is a friend and confidant. By listening to how children interact and talk with their new friend, parents are able to get insight into how children are processing the trauma. This insight allows parents to help address their children’s emotional needs.

Every year, Gleaning For The World sends an average of 35,000 stuffed animals to children in need of comfort across the United States and all around the world!

“Children are the smallest victims of natural disasters and it’s important that we remember their need for stability during the uncertainties that arise after devastation and destruction have occurred. That’s why we provide comfort to children through the gift of a teddy bear.”

Greg Middaugh

Teddy Bear Brigade Volunteer Coordinator

Giving children a new friend.

Disaster Bears

When we respond to a disaster, one of the most important care items we send with our relief shipments is stuffed animals.  We try to include thousands of stuffed animals along with the water, food, blankets and cleaning supplies.  Natural disasters are traumatizing to children.  They can suffer from nightmares, obsessive-compulsive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder. 

Counselors and volunteers are able to hand out stuffed animals, and tell the children that they can talk to their “new friend” and tell them all their fears and scary thoughts.  This provides an emotional outlet for children and allows parents insight into what is going on with their children in the aftermath of a storm.

We cannot forget about those children who suffer emotionally after a disaster.  A simple stuffed animal can start the healing process

International Bears

Each year, Gleaning For The World’s Teddy Bear Brigade reaches out to tens of thousands of children across the world to deliver stuffed animals.  These are extremely poor children, many of whom have never even owned a toy before.  We provide these stuffed animals along side other supplies.  They provide emotional support while the children are able to get medical care or a hot meal.

Stuffed animals bring these children, who are often victims of violence and abuse, to people who they can trust and get them the help they need.

Experience has shown that the simple gift of a stuffed animal can cut in half the amount of time it takes to help a child make this turnaround. These children have been loved by no one and had no one to love. When they are given a stuffed animal, they have, for the first time in their lives, a personal possession that is all their own – a symbol of security that offers them unconditional love and helps them begin to heal.

How To Get Involved

Stuffed Animal Drives

Give Your Organization a Cause

Is your organization looking for a way to help children around the world?  Clubs, businesses, churches and professional societies are able to hold teddy bear drives.  This is a great way to engage your supporters, increase foot traffic to your business and generate interest in your organization.


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Teddy Bear Tosses

Engage Your Fans with a Teddy Bear Toss

 At first home team scoring, breaks in play, or other times, fans can toss stuffed animals onto the playing area.  We work with professional, collegiate and amateur sporting events to publicize events and help the clean up of stuff animals.  We provide in game number so fans can be told how many animals have been donated.  Get your team involved today!


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Contact Us

7539 Stage Rd
Concord, VA, 24538

(434) 993-3600

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Gleaning For The World, Inc., is registered with the Internal Revenue Service as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.  All donations are tax deductible under this status.