Bears Honor Veterans

Bears of Hope joined Skokie's McCormick & Schick's Seafood & Steak Restaurant for its annual “Veterans Appreciation Day”. The restaurant gave veterans a complimentary lunch or dinner entrée and we gave them patriotic-themed fabric bears.

Bear volunteers Tanya Andressen, Marge Davis, Judy Litman, Sheila Mozin, Joanne Purvin & Carolyn Reiner personally thanked the veterans for their service to our nation and gave them our patriotic bears. Sheila replied,”I enjoyed meeting the veterans and listening to their service stories. They are so grateful for the bears.” 

Restaurant General Manager, Aaron Torricelli, added, “This was McCormick & Schmick’s 19th annual ‘Veterans Appreciation Day’. We are honored to pay tribute to our veterans. Bears of Hope was an added bonus and a huge part of the event that meant so much to the veterans.” 


Bears at High School Students Volunteer Fair

Bears of Hope was invited to participate in Skokie's Niles West High School Volunteer Fair on Friday, October 21st.  Bear volunteers, Carolyn & Sandy, set up a table to display the bears. They spoke to many students about Bears of Hope volunteer opportunities. Over 20 students filled out an application. We look forward to having the students help us make bears.


Lisa Edelson, Education to Careers Coodinator stated, "Niles Township High School District 219 encourages students to volunteer as an individual, team or club for one or more of the numerous service opportunities available in and around the Skokie Community.


Seniors Make a Difference

We held a "Stuffing Party" with senior residents from Senior Living Residence, Northbrook, on September 9th Eighteen residents attended to stuff patriotic bears for veterans and bears for sick children and adults. One senior said,  "I felt so good doing something for the veterans.  They did so much foir us so we could live in flreedom.' The seniors stuffed 42 bears for veterans and 12 bears for children and adults suffering in pain.

This is the sixth year the seniors have helped Bears of Hope.  Bears founder, Carolyn Reiner, commented, "We loved having the seniors help us. Our volunteers enjoy socializing with the seniors. The seniors do a great job stuffing our bears."







Bears Show Appreciation

 On Friday, July 8, founder, Carolyn Reiner, went to the Skokie Public Library to see Director, Carolyn Anthony.  Anthony was retiring after 31 years as the library's Director. To thank Anthony, the Bears made her a special bear to show our appreciation for the support she gave the Bears. When presented the bear, she said, "This is so special. Oh, look! Books are printed on the fabric".  

The library provides the Bears with boxes to pack our bears in for delivery to our social service agencies for their patients/clients.  

Anthony will be missed.  Reiner wished Anthony lots of happiness and good health as she beings a new journey in life.



Bears Receive Award

Rainbow’s Hospice & Palliative Care awarded Bears of Hope it’s 2016 Above and Beyond Award for excellence in volunteer services.  Along with the award came a note from Karen Huber, Rainbow’s coordinator of volunteer services.  She wrote:

Thank you so much for always thinking of us and donating your beautiful huggable bears. You and your volunteers are so deserving of this ‘Above and Beyond’ award.  Bears of Hope is one remarkable organization.

Carolyn Reiner said, “I feel humbled Bears of Hope was given this award. We are grateful our bears have been putting smiles on the patients faces at Rainbow.”

Rainbow Hospice & Palliative Care has been receiving bears since 2008.In 2014, Rainbow became part of the VA’s Hospice Care for terminally ill and dying veterans.  Rainbow now receives both patriotic-themed bears for the veterans as well as bears for their patients.