Pay It Forward Bears Promotion Facebook group has rekindled its bear-making project to help fire affected.

Joy Davies

Joy Davies

The Port Stephens-based Pay It Forward Bears Promotion Facebook group has rekindled its bear-making project which has spread across the globe.

A brainchild of Raymond Terrace woman Joy Davies, the group creates handmade teddy bears to distribute to people needing a hug.

"Three years ago when the Examiner published an article about my group we had made 15,000 bears which had been given out all over the world," Ms Davies said.

"Now we are almost at 50,000 bears and are presently making special little bears with a fire emblem or a yellow outfit to represent our firies.

"They are then sent to collection centres for distribution to anyone affected by the fires. A few days ago more than 100 of the bears were given out at the funeral of one of the fireman who had lost his life.

"We may not be donating millions of dollars but we are doing our bit to help out."

Diagnosed with cancer in 2016, Ms Davies has remained committed to her cause, to bring happiness to people through handmade teddy bears.

Her idea was simple: "Create a design that could be easily printed and made by people at home to give to others". Thankfully, people have taken the cause to heart too.

The Pay It Forward Bears Promotion Facebook group now has more than 1300 members in far flung places like South Africa, Belgium, the US and Canada. Even Bulgaria, Malaysia and Ecuador.

Those members have since made thousands of teddy bears, which have been given to children's hospitals, ambulance stations, cancer wards, aged care facilities, and to anyone who has just needed a hug.

Anyone wishing to join the group can do so via the Pay It Forward Bears Promotion Facebook page.