CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND - MARCH 29: A teddy bear is seen in a window on March 29, 2020 in Christchurch, New Zealand. Inspired by the Michael Rosen childrens book Were Going on a Bear Hunt, teddy bears and other cuddly toys are popping up in windows across New Zealand to give children something to look forward to on their neighbourhood walks during the lockdown. New Zealand has been in lockdown
CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND - MARCH 29: A teddy bear is seen in a window on March 29, 2020 in Christchurch, New Zealand. Inspired by the Michael Rosen childrens book Were Going on a Bear Hunt, teddy bears and other cuddly toys are popping up in windows across New Zealand to give children something to look forward to on their neighbourhood walks during the lockdown. New Zealand has been in lockdown

There’s a bear in there... and rainbows as well

LENNOX Head mum Natalee Kirkwood says the bear/rainbow challenge couldn't have come any sooner, with lots of children feeling the effects of coronavirus isolation.

After sharing posts about the idea on Facebook, the Kirkwood family took a drive around their village to see whether anybody had jumped on board and placed bears or rainbows in their windows.

"Our favourite moment by far was when the community responded and we did a drive around, there were bears and rainbows everywhere .. the kids were squealing in the car," Mrs Kirkwood said.

"It was so special.

"The bear/rainbow hunt started amongst friends and family whom we haven't been able to see directly with the isolation restrictions in place.

"So when the children saw the bears and rainbows ... they were so excited, they all screamed with excitement and begged me to do another lap in the car.

"And as more people started doing it, their reactions are so uplifting.

"It might seem like something little to an adult, but the kids find it hard to understand the situation we are all in, and absolutely love it and feel the love from the community.

"It's comforting for me that they are learning everyone else is doing the same thing."

As a teacher whose husband is currently working in Papua New Guinea the

For Mrs Kirkwood, a teacher, it has been daunting to function with restrictions, work, schooling and getting to the shops for supplies.

She said it was incredibly challenging to watch everyone in the community hurting so much as all the local businesses closed their doors, and this in turn was hard to communicate to the kids.

"That's why some little fun activities like the bears and rainbows are so important - bring some smiles to their faces," she said.

Lennox Head resident Helen Fry placed a bear in the window to support the cause when she first saw it appear on Facebook.

"I don't know why I decided to do it really," she said.

"I guess I feel for the parents at this time - trying to entertain the kids, and find fun things to do.

"Plus I've always had a secret collection of soft toys that sit a box in the wardrobe and it seemed the perfect way to justify that and to give little Blue Ted his moment in the spotlight."


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