Hospice of Michigan Seeking Volunteers with Sewing Experience to Create Memory Bears for Grieving Families

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich., (March 16, 2022)Hospice of Michigan is currently seeking volunteers in Traverse City and surrounding communities with sewing experience to create ‘Memory Bears’ to help comfort families who have lost loved ones.

The Memory Bear program was created in June 2014 by the not-for-profit’s grief support services department to help bereaved Hospice of Michigan families capture and preserve aspects of their loved ones within one-of-a-kind stuffed animals. As the initiative continues to gain popularity among bereaved families, more volunteers are needed to meet sewing demands.

Memory Bears are approximately eight inches in height and made with compassion and love by skilled volunteers. Families are encouraged to bring clothing of a loved one for sewers to use in creating a commemorative teddy bear. Hospice of Michigan patient families may receive one uniquely designed memory bear per each family.

“After a loved one has passed, a Memory Bear can give families something tangible to remember the one they are grieving,” said Kjirsten Boeve, grief support services manager for Hospice of Michigan. “Oftentimes, Memory Bears can give families a keepsake that reminds them of their loved ones and brings back fond memories and a sense of comfort.”

For those who have experienced a loss, Hospice of Michigan encourages a waiting period of one year before becoming a hospice volunteer to allow for the processing of grief.

If you or someone you know is interested in donating time to the Memory Bear program, please contact Kjirsten Boeve at 231-929-1557 or kboeve@hom.org.

For more information about Hospice of Michigan, visit www.hom.org.