WOODSTOCK – Thanks to a recent donation, Woodstock Fire/Rescue District crews will be packing something unexpected along with their heavy equipment – stuffed animals.
Catalent Pharma Solutions in Woodstock organized a donation drive to bring in teddy bears, stuffed frogs and other kid-pleasers to assist firefighters and paramedics with a part of their job many don’t consider – comforting distressed children.
“They will have them on an emergency vehicle, and in the event that a child needs comforting in a stressful time, then a stuffed animal will be offered for comfort,” said Tracy Havens-Wiecek, administrative assistant for the department.
The emotional stress on children during their own injuries or those of their family members can be high. The stuffed animals provide a small but important comfort, Havens-Wiecek said.
The Catalent Women’s Network conducted the “Catalent Cuddle Buddies” drive to provide stuffed animals to paramedics and emergency crews in the area.
It’s part of an overall outreach and involvement effort the network has made throughout the year.