The Martha’s Vineyard Teddy Bear Suite raises $35,000 for Boys & Girls Club

The Teddy Bear Suite raised $35,000 for Healthy Happy Kids at the Boys & Girls Club. - Guinevere Cramer

Organizers of the Martha’s Vineyard Teddy Bear Suite fundraiser announced that the annual holiday drive raised $35,000 for the Martha’s Vineyard Boys & Girls Club. According to a press release, the fundraising event has generated enough money to fund the club’s entire new childhood hunger initiative, Healthy Happy Kids.

With dozens of cheering Boys & Girls Club children surrounding them, the Teddy Bear Suite organizers presented the $35,000 check to the Boys & Girls Club executive director, Jessie Damroth.

Healthy Happy Kids, or H2K, provides a free snack or small meal for the hundreds of elementary-school-age children who attend the club’s After-School Program.

One in four Vineyard children receives free or reduced-cost breakfast and lunch at Island schools. With hundreds of kids from all six towns walking through the doors everyday, Ms. Damroth saw a big need for nutritious food choices that would be available to every child. There was going to be a significant cost associated with it, but it had to be done.

After meeting with Ms. Damroth, Teddy Bear Suite founder and Point B Realty owner and principal broker Wendy Harman decided this year’s monthlong campaign would support H2K. The ambitious goal would be to raise enough to fund the entire program. With support and help from hundreds of volunteers and donors, the Teddy Bear Suite raised $35,000 — the most the fundraiser has ever generated.

Ms. Damroth says H2K has already led to a noticeable change in the overall well-being of the kids at the club; from increased Homework Club participation to more productive play, Healthy Happy Kids is making a big difference for hundreds of children on the Island.

In the six years since its inception, the Martha’s Vineyard Teddy Bear Suite has raised more than $85,000 for the Martha’s Vineyard Boys & Girls Club — helping fund the After-School Program, making building repairs, buying supplies, and now funding Healthy Happy Kids.