Supplying the Bear Necessities




Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital’s Volunteer Services Department will host its fifth annual Donate-a-Bear Drive on Saturday, April 28, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in partnership with Camelot Moving and Storage and Amanda Benson at Ask Amanda. Come to the hospital campus and donate a brand-new 9- to 12-inch teddy bear or plush animal friend, which will be given to a child who visits our emergency room (ER). Enjoy photo opportunities and giveaways while getting the chance to give back to the community. 

In 2017, some 11,600 children under age 13 were seen in the Emergency Department at Henry Mayo. “Providing a stuffed animal to a child in the ER greatly reduces the stress they are feeling during their visit,” said Maria Strmsek, Director of Volunteer Services. “Thanks to the generous donations received at last year’s drive, we had 1,300 plush animals to give to our youngest patients.”
Amanda Benson knows how important it is to put children at ease in the ER. Several years ago, her son visited Henry Mayo’s ER to receive stitches for an injury on his face. “My son received a teddy bear while he was being treated,” said Benson. “Not only did the bear help to calm him down, but it also helped to calm me once I saw how much more relaxed he became.” That experience inspired her to help increase support for the bear drive. 

Thanks to Camelot Moving and Storage, the plush animals will have a temporary home until they are needed. Donations will be accepted at the Camelot truck near the medical office building at 23929 McBean Parkway on the Henry Mayo campus. IYH

For more information, contact April Garcia at (661) 200-1500 or Amanda Benson at (661) 714-9443. Visit our Facebook page