Thursday, February 27, 2014

The Big Bear Hand-Out

After several months of knitting, lots of wool shopping, lots of stuffing and sewing with creative and patient knitters - the day has finally come to hand over the Bear Necessities bears to the kids of Chintsa East Pre-school!

The Plan

Excitement from the children as they ran
to the sports field for the picnic :)
Thursday 20th Feb was marked as the day for the Bear Necessities first hand-out - with a little planning and some inspired ideas from Friends of Chintsa administrator Kate and VA32 volunteer Charlotte we were good to go; a short walk from school and sing-along to the Chintsa sports field where our knitters and support crew would be waiting with picnic blankets, bears, sandwiches and juice. Teddy Bears picnic! :)

The Hand-Out

The morning went swimmingly well with lots of support from the Bear Necessities crew, local businesses, Friends of Chintsa and Volunteer Africa all involved.

The walk to the field from school with teacher Phumla,
volunteers Charlotte, Deyse and Nadine 

Preschool teacher and local hero Phumla
explaining the day to the children

Check out some of these great photos of the morning and the pre-schoolers with their new bears:

The kids really loved their new friends and had a great time feeding them sandwiches and playing football with bears in hand. Phumla's preschoolers showed their appreciation with song, dancing and two BIG cards to say thank you for their bears.

A HUGE thank you to everyone involved in the project: to all knitters (both local and international); to local businesses Tea in the Trees, Prana Lodge, the Chintsa Village Bistro, Buccaneers Backpackers, Volunteer Africa 32 Degrees South and Tracy Norris Photography; a special thanks to Kate for organizing blankets for the picnic, Sarah for baking cakes, setting up with Kate and making picnic sandwiches, to Nadine for taking time off to take pictures and share them with us; to Friends of Chintsa for being so supportive of the initiative and giving so much help and support in organizing both the initiative and the hand-out event.

What Happens Now?

Our total bear count was 76 completed bears before the hand-out with a few more bears in progress! We handed out 43 bears and so have 33 left to give. The next step is to work with Friends of Chintsa to choose another preschool, work out how many bears they need and organize another hand out.

Keep posted for more updates and the next Big Bear Hand-Out!

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