On Sunday February 21 over 130 South Plainfield Girl Scouts gathered together at Holy Savior Academy cafeteria for their annual community service project.  This year, the girls made over 200 teddy bears to donate to local and state first responders.  The teddy bears are kept in police cars, ambulances and fire trucks.  When an emergency arises that involves a child, the first responders are able to give the child one of the teddy bears to help comfort them during the emergency.  The idea for the project is not new, as groups around the United States and United Kingdom have done similar events for years.   However, it was the first time that the South Plainfield Girl Scouts have held the event.   

Planning for this community service project started back in November with the purchase of about 25 yards of fleece.   During the months of December and January about 10 adult volunteers cut out over 200 teddy bears out of the fleece.  Then two adult volunteers sewed all the bears together, leaving an opening in the leg for the girls to do the stuffing. 

The service project day was split into two sessions. At the first session the older Girl Scouts in grades fourth through tenth painted faces on all the teddy bears.  They also cut out 200 red hearts to be placed inside the bears.  At the second sessions, the younger Scouts in grades kindergarten through third grade arrived to stuff the bears and put the red hearts inside. Then troop moms and other volunteers sewed the bears shut.  Each bear was then placed in its own ziplock bag to stay clean and dry in the trunks of first responder vehicles.   While some of the bears will stay local within the South Plainfield and neighboring Plainfield communities, a large number of bears have been donated to the New Jersey state police and will find new homes up and down the Garden State. 

The South Plainfield Girl Scouts would like to thank all the women who assisted with this project by cutting out the bears beforehand, as well as the 2 women who sewed the over 200 bears together.  We also recognize and thank all the adults who helped the day of the event by sewing the bears closed after stuffing.  And a big thank you goes out to the following troops that participated in this project:   65006, 65031, 65042, 65057, 65062, 65063, 65077, 65088, 65129, 65131, 65135, 65136, 65137, 65167, 65199, 65268, 65305, 65388, and 65997.  The girls had a lot of fun working on this community service project, and they all left happily knowing that they would bring a smile to child in need.  For more information about joining South Plainfield Girl Scouts, please contact Jeanne Gruver at gruver.jeanne@gmail.com