OAK BROOK, Ill., April 22, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Ty Warner, owner of the largest manufacturer of plush in the world, today announced the introduction of Hope, a limited-edition praying bear. This adorable, multi-colored bear will offer a symbol of hope to the world while also bringing much-needed support to the United Way Worldwide COVID-19 Fund. Warner will contribute 100% of the profits from the original sale to the United Way Worldwide fund.
"The world needs hope, and this little bear just might bring us the smile we need right now," Warner said. "It is an honor to partner with United Way Worldwide, the world's largest nonprofit organization, which has been providing hope to communities around the world for over 135 years."
Warner's announcement follows his decision last month to open his Four Seasons Hotel New York to nurses and medical workers fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, providing them a place to stay free of charge. In addition to today's release, Warner is delivering individual Hope bears to the medical professionals currently staying at the hotel – and making additional donations to the United Way Worldwide on their behalf.
Hope will be available worldwide in essential retail outlets such as drug and grocery stores, so that people can purchase the bear while shopping for groceries and other essential items. Hope can also be ordered online at Ty.com.
"United Ways around the world are working tirelessly to provide critical human services and much needed financial support to our most vulnerable populations in the face of the devastating COVID-19 pandemic," said Suzanne McCormick, U.S. President, United Way Worldwide. "We are touched by Ty's introduction of Hope, whose sales profits will help the most vulnerable populations receive critical financial and social service support during this global crisis."
In addition to fundraising from the sale of Hope, Warner is supporting those on the frontlines battling the COVID-19 pandemic in New York City by opening the doors of his Four Seasons Hotel New York free of charge to medical workers responding to the crisis.
"Many of those working in New York City have to travel long distances to and from their homes after putting in 18-hour workdays caring for COVID-19 patients. Our healthcare workers need a place closer to work where they can rest and regenerate in order to continue their service to our nation's sick and infirm," Warner said. "I am humbled that we could open the doors of the Four Seasons Hotel New York and provide a place for our nation's heroes to rest."
To learn more about the Hope Bear, please visit: https://shop.ty.com/
About Ty Warner
Ty Warner is an American toy manufacturer and owner of luxury hotels worldwide. He is Chairman, CEO, and founder of Ty Inc. the largest manufacturer of plush in the world. A philanthropist, Ty has donated in excess of $300 million to a variety of charities, including Children's Hunger Fund, World Vision, Toy Bank, International Toy Bank, Today Show, Children's Miracle Network, Operation Iraqi Freedom, Toys for Tots, Princess of Wales Foundation, Andre Agassi Foundation, American Red Cross, Save the Children, Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, NY Police and Fire Widow's Fund, Ronald McDonald House, USO, Mayo Clinic and UNICEF.
About United Way
United Way fights for the health, education and financial stability of every person in every community. Supported by 2.9 million volunteers, 9.8 million donors worldwide and $4.7 billion raised every year, United Way is the world's largest privately funded nonprofit. We're engaged in 1,800 communities across more than 40 countries and territories worldwide to create sustainable solutions to the challenges facing our communities. United Way partners include global, national and local businesses, nonprofits, government, civic and faith-based organizations, along with educators, labor leaders, health providers, senior citizens, students and more. For more information about United Way, please visit UnitedWay.org. Follow us on Twitter: @UnitedWay and #LiveUnited.