Teddy Bear Program

A young girl receives a teddy bear from a female police officer and two Bridgehead employees.

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A hug, some comfort, and a furry friend for life. Ottawa Police officers are equipped with a special piece of equipment in cruisers to warm a child’s heart – a teddy bear.

All Ottawa Police cruisers carry teddy bears so officers arriving at emergency scenes can use them to comfort and distract children from potentially traumatic situations. Teddy bears are proven to have a calming effect by providing comfort and something tangible to hold during times of crisis. They also help forge a bond between the officer and the child as well as minimize the psychological impact of a traumatic situation by diverting the child’s attention from the stress of the trauma to the comfort of the teddy bear.

Teddy Bear Program Questions and Answers

What types of situations would trigger an Officer to give out a teddy bear?

Unfortunately, children are sometimes faced with adult problems. Teddy bears can be used to distract children from potentially traumatic situations and are given out based on the officer’s assessment of the child’s physical and emotional status. Some of these situations may include: traffic stops, accidents, domestic violence, child abuse, neglect, medical emergencies etc...

Theo, a small child who received a teddy bear.I have gently used teddy bears. Can I donate them to the Teddy Bear Program?

We have politely declined donations of stuffed animals from the public since the Teddy Bear Program’s inception to ensure that the bears conform to a consistent size, are hypoallergenic and brand new.

Inquiries about donations can be sent to TeddyBearMail@ottawapolice.ca.

 Please note: The Ottawa Police Service does not solicit for donations for this program. If you've been asked to donate to this program, please file a report about a potential scam.