Q: What is a Heartbeat Bear?

A: A Catherine Cares Heartbeat Bear is a standard size Build-A-Bear teddy bear. The bear is designed with a unique pocket which contains a recording device. When a baby receives a life-limiting diagnosis, a hospital partner team records the baby’s heartbeat onto the device, places the device into the bear’s pocket and presents the bear to the family on behalf of Catherine Cares.

Q:  What is a hospital partner?

A:  Catherine Cares provides our services to our hospital, maternal and fetal center, and doctor office partners. These partners give the items to the families on behalf of Catherine Cares. Since 2014, Catherine Cares has provided our services to more than 70 hospitals throughout the US.

Q:  How do families receive Heartbeat Bears?

A:  When our hospital partners are concerned with the health of a prenatal or newborn baby, the hospital team has the ability to place the recording of that baby’s heartbeat into one of our bears. During an appointment, the family receives their baby’s Heartbeat Bear. The Bear is given to the family by a hospital team member on behalf of Catherine Cares.

Q: Why do families receive a Heartbeat Bear?

A: The biggest fear of any bereaved parent is that their child will be forgotten. Catherine Cares seeks to remember all babies who receive any prenatal or newborn life-limiting condition. Our Heartbeat Bears provide comfort to grieving families. Preserving the sound of the baby’s heartbeat within a soft, cuddly teddy bear, is beautiful proof of a loved baby.

Q:  What is the impact of my financial support?

A: Catherine Cares wants families to know they are not alone on this unimaginable journey of pregnancy and infant loss, which is frequently experienced in isolation as it is not often discussed. While everyone’s story of loss may be different, the heartache is the same. Donations to Catherine Cares ensures that our mission continues to positively impact even more hurting families for years to come. 

Every $30 donated provides a Catherine Cares Heartbeat Bear to a hurting family.

“Our Heartbeat Bear became our lifeline. I can’t tell you how many times during my grieving process that I grabbed our Collins bear and clung to it as my heart continued to break, missing my beautiful angel. The comfort that these heartbeat bears provide to a bereaved parent/family is almost indescribable and something I don’t think is truly possible to understand unless you have walked in our shoes.” -Recipient of a Heartbeat Bear

“I didn’t know how I felt about getting the bear at the time you offered but was thankful for the opportunity. I really just did not expect our baby to pass away so suddenly. Now I am forever thankful for this bear.” -Recipient of a Heartbeat Bear

We truly appreciate all that you do for our families and staff…This is so wonderful and needed by too many families. I’m so blessed to have the ability to provide Heartbeat Bears to families. It means the world to them.” -Nurse Coordinator, Fetal Care Center 

“It is an absolute honor for us to collaborate with Catherine Cares, who generously provides us with Heartbeat Bears. These bears serve as a symbol of love, support, and hope for our fetal care patients as they embark on a new journey.” -Program Coordinator, Fetal Care Institute

To learn more, visit: catherinecares.org