Kids Share Hearts, Hugs at NYC Build-A-Bear Workshop through Journey of Hope Program
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Kids Share Hearts, Hugs at NYC Build-A-Bear Workshop through Journey of Hope Program

NEW YORK - April 5, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ - Build-A-Bear Workshop and Save the Children hosted 25 guests from Sheltering Arms Children and Family Services at the Build-A-Bear Workshop Empire State Building store in New York City. The event celebrated the culmination of the Build-A-Bear Share Your Heart cause campaign supporting Save the Children's Journey of Hope program in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. 

Build-A-Bear and its guests raised more than $300,000 during the company's Share Your Heart campaign, including $100,000 from the Build-A-Bear Foundation. They also collected more than 47,000 heart cards to send well wishes to children participating in the Save the Children Journey of Hope program, which empowers children of all ages to identify and build coping skills, self-esteem, and overall resilience.

Launched in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in 2008, Journey of Hope has benefitted more than 85,000 children and is utilized in numerous settings to help children recover from experiences following a disaster or other traumatic experience. Save the Children and local children's agency Sheltering Arms have worked together since Superstorm Sandy to implement Journey of Hope in several of its New York City early childhood education centers, including the Harlem location which participated in the event.

"This event embodies the spirit of the Journey of Hope program and the importance of a loving and supportive environment for children in need. The power of something as simple and innocent as a bear bringing a smile and feeling of love to a child reminds us all of how important this psychosocial work is for children here and around the world.  Following disasters and other traumatic experiences, children often struggle to move forward, and they need support to develop coping skills and strategies to deal with their emotions in healthy ways," said Natalie Vega O'Neil, Save the Children's acting vice-president for U.S. Programs. "Thanks to the support from Build-A-Bear Workshop, we will continue this important work with communities to build on children's strengths and resiliency as we expand the program and reach even more children in need."

"The celebratory in-store event was a hit among young guests who participated in the Journey of Hope program.  And the program has been very successful among the children Sheltering Arms serves," said the agency's CEO, Elizabeth McCarthy.

"Both published research and our first-hand experience shows us that 'toxic stress' in low-income communities can severely inhibit young children," said McCarthy. "Through our partnership with Save the Children, we've demonstrated that interventions geared toward social-emotional development can positively disrupt the cycle of poverty."

Learn more about Save the Children's Journey of Hope program here:

About Save the Children 

Save the Children invests in childhood – every day, in times of crisis and for our future. In the United States and around the world, we are dedicated to ensuring every child has the best chance for success. Our pioneering programs give children a healthy start, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. Our advocacy efforts provide a voice for children who cannot speak for themselves. As the leading expert on children, we inspire and achieve lasting impact for millions of the world's most vulnerable girls and boys. By transforming children's lives now, we change the course of their future and ours.  Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

About Build-A-Bear

Founded in St. Louis in 1997, Build-A-Bear, a global brand kids love and parents trust, seeks to add a little more heart to life. Build-A-Bear Workshop has approximately 400 stores worldwide where guests can create customizable furry friends, including company-owned stores in the United States, Canada,Denmark, Ireland, Puerto Rico, and the United Kingdom, and franchise stores in Africa, Asia, Australia,Europe, Mexico and the Middle East. The company was named to the FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For® list for the eighth year in a row in 2016. Build-A-Bear Workshop, Inc. (NYSE: BBW) posted a total revenue of $377.7 million in fiscal 2015. For more information, visit the Investor Relations section of 

About Sheltering Arms

Sheltering Arms strengthens the education, wellbeing, and development of high-need children and families across the New York metro area. We serve nearly 20,000 people a year from the South Bronx to Far Rockaway. Through compassion, innovation and partnership, we respond to our community's most pressing needs and enable individuals to reach the greatest heights of their potential.  Learn more at

SOURCE Save the Children



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