About Us


The mission of The Bear Hug Project 501(c)(3) is to bring smiles to the faces of children who are unfortunately sick and hospitalized in Southeastern Wisconsin during the holiday season.

Our goal is to provide an anonymous gift of a stuffed animal to each and every child at Christmas.

This may be a lofty goal but we know we can achieve it through the help of our team of dedicated volunteers, charitable donations, and generous corporate donor partnerships.


Over 3,000 Bear Hugs at 6 Partner Hospitals



The Bear Hug Project 501(c)(3) was started by Noel Schoessow based on his experience as a child.

This is his story: "When I was a child I suffered a significant eye injury that left me hospitalized for nearly one year. This was an incredibly lonely and frightening time for me. During my stay in the hospital, my family gave me a puppet named 'Fido' as a gift and Fido became my best friend. Fido went everywhere with me in the hospital and was a predominant source of comfort while I was there.

I made a promise to myself that when I grew up I would find a way to bring that same comfort I felt from Fido to other sick children who were stuck in the hospital during the holidays. All donations are anonymous, and every penny raised goes towards providing 'Bear Hugs' to children in Southeastern Wisconsin."

Corporate Partners

The Bear Hug Project is made possible in part by our generous corporate partners.
2021 Corporate Sponsors