We Care’s Annual Tradition Brings Hope to Others

Writer / Sarah Shutt
Photography provided

Hope, the doll that is at the center of the We Care tradition, has been a staple of We Care since she was found in a bag of donated items. Hope was originally created in 1965 by Hasbro Inc, with the given title “Little Miss No Name.” Sadly, she wasn’t a big hit and was easily overlooked. However, the volunteers of We Care thought differently and were moved by her big eyes, out-turned palm, and the tear rolling down her face.

“Hope reminds us that we all need help sometimes and that we should always have hope.” Becky Varnell, president of We Care, says. “Her symbolism drives every volunteer to give to those in need, and want to help those. This is what makes the heartbeat of the organization and pushes us to do more and give back to the community.”

Each year, starting in November, We Care puts on several different fundraisers—starting with the Christmas Tree Auction, We Care Park, and then finishing with the We Care Telethon running the first full week of December. All the money that is raised is donated to several different organizations — The Salvation Army, the Kokomo Rescue Mission, Bona Vista and Goodfellows. To end the We Care fundraisers, Hope is the last thing to be auctioned off during the telethon. Hope has been bought and returned by many businesses and families since 1986. With each year, her worth increases more as the friendly competition grows.

The amount of love she has gained over the years represents all the kindness and offering the community has given back. We Care strives to continue their tradition and to be there for those in need, especially during Christmas time. Volunteers are needed for many different roles during the time of We Care—from answering phones during the telethon, organizing activities, managing the donations or working the We Care store. Anyone can be apart of We Care by volunteering or donating to the organization.

Although We Care was formed before Hope came into the picture, it wasn’t long until she became the face of the local phenomenon. She represents hope for many people and families that are struggling, showing that there is always hope when there is kindness and people willing to help. Together, We Care and Hope work together to bring a brighter Christmas to thousands. We Care’s purpose for doing their charitable work is because “We care.”


Comments 2

  1. Lois Sambrano-Smith says:

    Hi! Back in the 50s Bobby Darin sang a song called; “Artifical Flowers”. It was about a little girl named Annie who sold the flowers on the street. She was VERY poor and I can’t remember if she had parents or not. She was found frozen to death. I wonder IF the doll was fashioned in homage to Annie…

  2. Lois Smith says:

    I just read about the fabulous and wonderful programs you’re aiding. I am a Widow living on Social Security and it’s not easy, as you might imagine. I am unable to walk and I’m currently in a wheelchair. I no longer drive and I never get out of my apartment because I only moved here from CA a short time ago and I have no friends. What I desperately need is a mobility scooter. That way I’d be able to go out and go to the Goodwill, for example, and get to know my neighborhood. I’ve tried to get help/assistance from Medicaid along with my Medicare but I’ve be having a lot of problems getting anywhere. Ii wonder if you could give me some tips on who I might contact? I’d be so greatful!!!
    May I thank you in advance?
    Lois Smith

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