Teddy bear hugs go a long way and thanks to the community there will now be more than 2,000 available to young victims of tragedy in the city.

The Kid’s Help Phone handed hundreds of teddy bears over to the Calgary police service yesterday after the wrap-up of the 2010 Share Your Bear collection. “These teddy bears are warm, soft and cuddly and will provide that little bit of extra comfort when a young person is feeling alone,” Kate Munoz of the Kids Help Phone said.

“I think in those times of sadness and loneliness it helps them feel less alone and leaves a lasting impression.”

It’s the 10th year Girl Guides volunteers and Maxwell Realty assisted in collecting and tagging the bears to be given to the police victim assistance units to hand out to future Calgarians who may need them.

Sgt. Rick Brilz of the victim assistance unit said the best thing about the bears is they are not just for kids.

“It’s surprising how many people really appreciate the bears, young or old. It’s not just the kids who appreciate a gift of a teddy bear,” Brilz said.

Since 2008, bears have also been handed out to homeless people through the Project Homeless Connect.

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