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Alacare, FDA team up for teddy bear drive

Fort Dale Academy’s Student Government Association teamed up with Alacare Home Health and Hospice to collect teddy bears for hospice patients and individuals in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Front row, left to right, Wendy Jones, Theresa Scott, Shelley Brannon, Laura Sellers Perdue, Barrett Leverette, Hannah Dillard and Rebecca Butts. Back row, left to right, Ethan Gregory, Taylor Autrey, and Tripp Richardson. (Advocate Staff/Andy Brown)

For many, Valentine’s Day is filled with cards, chocolates, flowers and the occasional stuffed animal.

But that’s not the case for everyone. Alacare Home Health and Hospice, along with the Fort Dale Academy Student Government Association, is trying to do something about that.

Alacare and the Fort Dale SGA have teamed up to collect teddy bears to hand out on Valentine’s Day to hospice patients, individuals in nursing homes and assisted living facilities.

“A lot of times when we go in and visit our patients, we always try to have something in our hands to brighten their day and give them a little something,” Rebecca Butts, Alacare volunteer coordinator, said. “They love stuffed animals.”

Fort Dale’s SGA is hoping to collect 50 teddy bears, and Butts said she is hoping to collect 150 overall.

Members can take part by donating a teddy bear, and Butts said Alacare would be happy to come pick up the donation.

“It means a lot,” Butts said. “It’s a hard time, and a lot of times what we do is go in and provide companionship and emotional support, but also brighten their day with a token of a teddy bear.”

The deadline for collecting teddy bears is Feb. 10.

Butts said she wanted to work with the SGA to show young people that they can get involved.

“I have a lot of volunteers here, but I also wanted the young people to see and get an idea of what it’s like to give back,” Butts said. “My children are volunteers and it really touches them. Most of our hospice patients and people living in nursing homes and assisted living facilities are older, and young people just brighten their day. I really think it’s something good for the students at Fort Dale and all of the surrounding schools to give back.”

For more information or to arrange for a donation to be picked up, contact Butts at (334) 382-1071.