We give mascots to our wards in the countries of Asia and Africa most rarely, as the number of very small wards is relatively small and the shipping costs relatively high when necessities can be sent. We have primary, secondary and university students in our education programme, rather than pre-schoolers and grades 1-3, and we used to add a few to each bulk parcel sent to missionary outposts.
However, the pandemic caused a block on any shipments of in-kind donations, so for almost two years we
for almost two years, we only collected the teddy bears that appeared in the gifts. It took us a long time to figure out what to do with them to realise their positive potential.
Sometimes it is fate that guides the foundation’s actions, although circumstances can be dramatic, which is why we responded to an unexpected appeal from entertainers and scouts on the aid groups on FB regarding the youngest refugees appearing at Poznan’s train station during the day as well as at night. We learned that a place was being created at Poznan’s railway station for children to be seen first getting off the train with their backpacks, which rarely had room left for a favourite toy so that the luggage would not weigh them down on the journey. We took the washed and sorted cuddly toys right there.
The 24-hour children’s drop-off point was already dubbed “Narnia” after just a few days, and the work of the volunteers was at a premium. It was there that the children received toys, energy mousses, a bottle of water, colouring books, crayons or a warm teddy bear – sometimes one of the ones that donors have given to us in recent years. It is your contribution to give children a smile.
In parallel with the mascots, we try to help by volunteering. People from Ukraine, whom we help directly, have become involved in support points for newcomers. Knowing the language, they provided support at the MTP point in Poznań. We are grateful to them too, as this was a very emotionally demanding challenge for them.