Taipei police cars carry teddy bears to comfort traumatised kids

TAIPEI (Bernama): Teddy bears are now part of the standard kit in Taipei police patrol cars, to help bring comfort to children in traumatic and stressful situations, reported Taiwan’s Central News Agency (CNA) according to the city's Police Department.

In a press release earlier this week, the department said the new policy was initiated by its Commissioner Chen Jia Chang, after he learned about the type of gear Dutch police were carrying in their patrol cars, which includes teddy bears.

Described as trauma teddies, the stuffed toys are sometimes given to young children to distract them in stressful situations or to calm and comfort them after they have experienced some type of trauma, the department said.

Chen thinks a teddy bear can provide better psychological comfort to children than actual words, especially in cases such as traffic accidents, according to the press release.

The concept of equipping patrol cars with teddy bears follows the lead of Good Bears of the World (GBW), an international charity that was the first group to donate teddy bears to police departments, in the 1980s.

GBW was founded in 1969 in Switzerland by late radio pioneer James Theodore Ownby, Colonel Robert Henderson of England, and British actor Peter Bull, and since then it has given hundreds of thousands of teddy bears to those in need of love and a hug, according to its website.

"Firemen, policemen, emergency workers, psychologists, and grief counsellors have discovered the teddy bear's magical healing power is invaluable when given to children and their families in traumatic situations," GWB says on its site. - Bernama

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