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Henrico students collect stuffed animals for storm victims

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WTVR) – Students at R.C. Longan Elementary School in Henrico County are collecting new and gently-used stuffed animals to give to children who lost their toys when tornadoes tore through Indiana last month.

[DRAMATIC VIDEO: Tornado tosses Indiana school bus]

After seeing images of the storm damage on the news, fourth grader Alex Hurst and second grader Sam Hurst asked if there was a way they could help. Their mother, who is a member of the Longan PTA, found the Virginia-based Teddy Bear Brigade,a group that delivers stuffed animals to areas hit by disaster.

She suggested the children write a proposal letter to their principal to explain why they wanted to collect the stuffed animals and wait for his approval.

The letter read:

Dear Dr. Hall,

Last week there were some very bad tornadoes near our Aunt Grace’s house in Indiana. Some kids lost all of their stuff. We wanted to find a way to help kids like them. There is a group called the Teddy Bear Brigade. They collect stuffed animals for kids suffering after natural disasters, wars, and sickness. We e-mailed them and they said they would help us run a collection at Longan. We are asking for your permission to start our own Teddy Bear Brigade at Longan .If you approve our plan we would go on the morning announcements and ask kids to bring in new or gently used stuffed animals to donate. We would need a collection space at Longan for kids to drop them off. Our mom would drive us to drop them off at Teddy Bear Brigade Headquarters. If you let us do this, we would like for you to put it in the Longan Letters and send a call to all Longan families to tell them about the collection. If we get your approval we would like to announce it at the PTA meeting March 15. The Teddy Bear Brigade Group said they would give us some flyers , posters, and banners. We hope you will consider letting us collect donations to help kids around the world, it would mean a lot to us. Thank you.
Your students,
Alex and Sam Hurst

Dr. Hall approved the project and collection began March 27. The school is accepting stuffed animals through April 5.

To donate,  Longan Elementary School is located at 9200 Mapleview Avenue in Henrico, Virginia.

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