Yulee, Fla. – The Byrd Wallace Veterans of Foreign Wars Post #4351 has established a partnership with the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office Bears on Patrol teddy bear program to provide bears to patrol deputies. The teddy bears will be used throughout the year to give to children in need who deputies encounter when responding to emergency calls.
The local VFW recently purchased the bears and donated them to NCSO. Often times, children are present in homes where domestic violence or other traumatic incidents have occurred that would be scary to a child. The teddy bears will give the children something warm and cuddly to hang on to and thus calm their fears a bit.
In addition to the patrol deputies, NCSO’s Detective Division will also utilize teddy bears when interviewing young victims of sexual/physical assault and domestic violence.
Sheriff Bill Leeper said “These warm and fuzzy friends are one way to ease the fears of young children who are caught in difficult situations, often bringing a sense of security to a child who is overcome with anxiety.”
VFW Post #4351 also donates to various youth programs including Voice of Democracy, Patriot’s Pen, Eagle Scout of the Year and JROTC. They also donate to veterans’ hospitals, rest homes and assisted living facilities, as well as active duty VFW programs such as Operation Uplink, which provides phone cards to overseas active duty vets.
Veterans of the Spanish-American War and the Philippine Insurrection founded the VFW in 1899 as the American Veterans of Foreign Service, with a mission to “honor the dead by helping the living.”
Today there are 2.2 million members of VFW and its auxiliaries located in 8,100 posts around the world. To be eligible to join the VFW, one needs to have either a campaign medal for overseas service, have served 30 consecutive days or 60 non-consecutive days in Korea, or have received hostile fire or imminent danger pay.
For more information visit their website at vfwpost4351.org or call 904-432-8791.