‘Ava’s Project’ Provides Previously Loved Toys To Kids

Second grader Ava Bean devised a plan to provide toys to kids in need, with the help of her Y Counselor Stephanie Fanning. The two are pictured with some of the stuffed toys they have collected for kids at Humphrey’s Highland School in Amarillo. Photo by Bonnie J. Gordon/ladailypost.com

Los Alamos Daily Post

Staff and children at the Chamisa Elementary YMCA Afterschool Program discussed poverty and its consequences recently.

Y Counselor Stephanie Fanning told the kids about her student teaching experience at a Title I school in Amarillo, Texas and about how little the children had.

The story affected second grader Ava Bean and she started thinking and came up with an idea.

“I thought of a way to help,” she said. “We’re collecting stuffies (stuffed animals) for the kids at the school. We’re going to put a tag on them that says ‘I’m a misfit toy. Please love me.’”

“I know the kids love them because they don’t have many toys,” Ava said.

Fanning contacted Humphrey’s Highland School in Amarillo. “The principal was pretty excited,” Fanning said.

Fanning will drive the toys to Amarillo.
Parents, children and interested individuals are asked to bring medium to small sized donations of previously loved, gently used “stuffies” to the Y’s donation boxes at the Family YMCA, Chamisa Elementary School and Mountain Elementary School by Dec. 14. The animals will be made-over and laundered.

“I think a lot of people will want to do this, because it will make kids feel better,” Ava said. “The kids will know we care.”