News of the success of the Teddies for Loving Care scheme has spread to America, where the idea has been picked up by Freemasons in Maine
Gary Bennett, currently Senior Warden in St John’s Lodge in the state’s South Berwick area, read on the internet about the latest donation to Graham Cadel, the Lincolnshire Freemason known at Lincoln County Hospital at ‘The Teddy Man’. Gary was so impressed with the scheme that he emailed to ask if his Lodge could ‘borrow’ the idea – and of course he could; it’s already being run by Lodges in New York, where it’s called Teddy Bears On Call. They got the idea from Fremasons in Cheshire.
‘The Teddy Man’ is Graham Cadel, a member of Lincoln’s Minster Lodge, who had just been given £131 by Excalibur Lodge and £615 by Ashlar Lodge in the city. He explained that Teddies for Loving Care had so far given more than three million cuddly toys to children going through tough moments in hospital, with the bears providing comfort not only for the children, but also for their parents.
He offered the example of the distraught two-year-old who needed to use an inhaler. The bear she is given has two puffs on the inhaler, and then the toddler taks the same dose. 'And a child needed to go into a scanner, which can be traumatic enough for an adult, never mind a child – but a nurse produced a teddy bear, and he went into the scanner too, taking away all the fear,' said Graham.