Children with disabilities often face a host of challenges that we would not even consider. One of the challenges for young children with disabilities is finding a toy doll that they can relate to and understand.
I am THRILLED to announce that I have been selected as GoFundMe's Hero of December. The story just went public ❤️It is…
One incredibly kind woman has taken it upon herself to make sure that kids with disabilities never feel left out or different. Amy Jandrisevits used to work in a hospital oncology unit doing social work for ill children and their families Because of this work, she fully understands the importance of dolls in proving therapy for sick kids.
Jandrisevits said that her time as a social worker made her realize how much dolls are needed to heal the heart and soul of children who have already been through so much in a physical sense. She compared dolls to a human likeness. The dolls that they use for healing are basically extensions of the children themselves.
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Through this work experience, Jandrisevits said that one day she realized that the dolls that they were using at the hospital were not relatable to the children. For example, it is hard to relate to a doll with thick and beautiful hair when chemotherapy has robbed you of your own locks.
Jandrisevits said that it made her sad to realize that these children were not able to see their own personal reflection in their beloved dolls. She said it is difficult to try to convince a child that they are beautiful when all of the dolls on the market look nothing like them.
Because of this realization, Jandrisevits began making non-traditional Raggedy Ann dolls to match the needs of her patients. Jandrisevits was soon contacted by a woman who wanted a doll for her daughter who had to have her leg amputated. Jandrisevits complied and made a doll that was also missing a leg. Her favourite project was a doll for a girl who was transitioning. Jandrisevits made the doll with green cropped hair and a Ninja Turtle outfit, matching the personality and desires of the patient.
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From there, the project took off and Jandrisevits has since made over 300 dolls. Although Jandrisevits charges $100 for each doll for the families who can afford it, dolls are given at no cost to those who cannot.
Also check out this amazing video of a quadruple amputee toddler Harmonie Allen and her custom-made doll with prosthetic legs:
What do you think about this special idea? Do you think, it’s important to open up businesses like this and sell dolls, that showcase different body images – or do you think they profit off of the wrong thing? We would love to know your opinion in the comments! And make sure to spread the joy to others and pass on this article to your friends and loved ones to raise awareness to the cause.