Meet Boozle Bear, A Wonderful Educational Tool

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By Lisa Sun, HA Administrative and Program Assistant

picture of three boozle bearsOur Boozle bear, who has hydrocephalus, was created by Dory Kranz and Sarah Zadorozynj. Boozle is used by doctors, nurses and parents to teach children about hydrocephalus and how shunting works. Boozle comes with a detachable ventriculo-peritoneal (VP) shunt which is donated by Codman. Anyone can learn to perform “surgery” on this bear. Since their creation, Boozles have been featured at WALK sites, in school meetings, various conferences, and even as a childrens’ workshop at our biennial conference. Kids have taken these bears to school, and Boozle is a great way for them to educate their peers about hydrocephalus.

We want to thank the many volunteers who have donated their time in helping to make these beautiful bears, a special big shout out to Annie Mason, Sandi Jacobsen, Staci Buckner and Colleen Talbot.

Annie has graciously shared with us her experience with making Boozle. Here is her encounter with the Bear:

In early 2011, I started a support group in the state of Virginia. When I received the materials for my first meeting, a Boozle bear was included. I knew that I had a young mother coming who had a child about 5 years old. With HA’s permission, I gave her the Boozle bear for her son. That same day I got the most endearing email from her, in which she described how his eyes lit up when he realized that this little bear “has a shunt, too!!!!”

 

 

A short time later I volunteered to take a box of Boozle bears that were incomplete and finish them. The big box arrived with all the materials that I needed and I set to work. I had the pattern instructions and about 20 bears that had the front section finished with stitched eyes and the inner muslin through which the “shunt” will be placed. The steps were laid out on the instructions and I started my own little production line. I made it my plan that I would work on these a little at a time, and keep in mind that these would eventually land in the hands of a little one who would delight in the fact that this little bear also had a shunt like them.

 

 

My favorite part is stuffing these little guys….it’s when they take on their own personality and cuteness. I decided to add a little ribbon of the Hydrocephalus Association aqua color to tie around each neck. I imagine that each Boozle bear can be a teaching tool for medical staff….but also must be a helpful for parents who are frightened about explaining to a small toddler who may not quite understand the process. Making these turned out not to be “work” at all; it’s pure JOY.

We can always use volunteers to help us make these wonderful bears. If you like to sew or are able to trace, cut, embroider and stuff and are interested in helping with this project, please email: lisa@hydroassoc.com for more information. Have a Boozle story? We’d love to hear from you!

18 Comments for : Meet Boozle Bear, A Wonderful Educational Tool
    • Patricia Burd RN CDDN
    • May 22, 2019
    Reply

    I am a Nurse at a school for children with special needs. Many of my students have a VP Shunt. I would love to have one of these bears to share with my student, staff and parents. My daughter also had a VP shunt. How can I obtain one for my school?

  1. How can i get one of these Teddy Bears for my son Juan Pablo (8years), he was shunted 5 days ago for the first time ( before he had ETV). I woul like one to teach him and his peers about the shunt. Thank you

    • Patricia
    • November 25, 2018
    Reply

    I would like to purchase a booze bear how do I do that?

      • Lakisha Harris
      • December 4, 2018
      Reply

      Hello Patricia,

      Please email me at info@hydroassoc.org for more information on Boozle Bear purchase.

      All the best,
      Lakisha

    • Ursula Johnson
    • April 18, 2017
    Reply

    Hi I am in Australia can we order a Boozle Bear?

  2. Reply

    I would very much like to order a bear for my son! He has a VP programmable shunt and if you could give me any details on how to get one I would so appreciate that very much 🙂

      • tom
      • April 5, 2012
      Reply

      Hello Doreen,
      To order a Boozle Bear please contact us either by email at info@hydroassoc.com or phone at 888-598-3789.
      Tom

        • Savannah
        • March 8, 2017
        Reply

        I sent an email to the email you listed..but it kicked it back saying the address couldn’t be reached.. I’ve had hydrocephalus since birth as well as a chiari (and 2 adjustable shunts)And was wondering how I maybe able to acquire a bear?

    • Donna
    • December 19, 2011
    Reply

    I was wondering, where can I purchase a Boozle Bear, my oldest son has Hydrocephalus and a VP shunt and this would be so easy to explain things to him and his classmates and my younger son who is afraid of hurting his brothers shunt.

  3. Reply

    I was born with hydrocephalus, and love teddy bears. I would love to have one of these bears. I would also be interested in helping you to make/assemble these bears. I try to educate every person that I meet about this condition.

    • Jean Wachter
    • November 15, 2011
    Reply

    I would love to know how to purchase one of these bears or how to make one. My 17 year old daughter will be doing her senior project on hydrocephalus. My 14 year old daughter has had hydro since birth. This would go a long way in helping her make aware, hydrocephalus.

    Thank you.

    Jean
    Beaver, Pa

  4. Reply

    I would like very much to know how to get the materials to make the bear and be able to distribute them to our Child. Hospital or receive a bear for my 5 year old or both.

    I also have a question for others whose children have hydrocephalus? My son’s Strat programable shunt changed settings (yes we know about the magnets, but don’t have an exposure to blame it on) and cause increased pressure resulting in vomiting and headache. Has anyone else had this happen to them?

    Has anyone else’s child experienced muscle spasms in their neck, causing instability for a period of time?

    With respect and Blessings,
    Brandon and Sue H.

    • Christi Oldham
    • September 1, 2011
    Reply

    What a wonderful learning tool and teddy bear for comfort! I would like to find out how I could get a Bear for my daughter who is 9 and has Hydrocephalus. I would also like for her and myself to help with making the bears if there is a need.
    I will look forward to hearing back from you. Thank you for sharing this with us. There is so little resources for educating younger kids that this is awesome! I wish I would have known about the teddy bear last year when Andie and myself gave a presention to her 3rd grade class about her Hydrocephalus.

    • meetg
    • August 30, 2011
    Reply

    Do you need help making them?

    • Ruby Barnes
    • August 29, 2011
    Reply

    How can I get these bears and what is the cost? Also how can I get patient education materials?

    • Teri Ellett
    • August 22, 2011
    Reply

    How can I get a Boozle Bear? I have hydrocephalus and am also a teddybear collector. I have over 300 hundred bear and would love one with hydrocephalus.
    Thank you
    teri Ellett

    • Sarah Williams
    • August 22, 2011
    Reply

    I wish one of these bears would be given to every child that has to have a shunt.

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