Teen raises thousands, makes teddy bears for young hospital patients

Teen raises thousands, makes teddy bears for young hospital patients
Updated: Feb. 2, 2017 at 12:06 AM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn
Elrod makes bears for children at the hospital. (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Elrod makes bears for children at the hospital. (Source: WAVE 3 News)

CORYDON, IN (WAVE) – With a spool of yarn and a hot glue gun, one girl is impacting the lives of patients at Norton Children's Hospital in more ways than one.

McKinley Elrod likes to be called "Kinley." The 13-year-old's laughter is infectious.

"I like the bears a lot," Elrod said.
 
Elrod makes bears for children at the hospital.
 
"If you want one, you'll probably get one," Elrod said.

MORE FROM WAVE3.COM
Derby season inching closer
Fern Creek High School seniors receive college scholarship money
Amazon to open air cargo hub in Northern KY, creating thousands of jobs

 
To receive a bear, all Elrod asks is that she is sent the name of the person who needs one.

This project started with Elrod's organization, Kinley's Helping Hands. She made pillows and held toy drives for patients at the children's hospital.

"I didn't want to stop there," Elrod said. 
 
Elrod then hosted carnivals and raised more than $10,000. All of the money goes to patient's families in need of financial assistance.
 
"She is a go getter," Norton Children's Hospital Foundation executive director Traci Simonsen said. "I love this little girl."

Everyone else at the hospital loves Elrod as well. They are dedicating a toy room to her. 
 
"This is a place for you to play as you can see we have toys here for kids of all ages," Simonsen said.
 
The toy room is used to distract patients from the stress of being in the hospital. Elrod's family knows the feeling all too well. Elrod has been in and out of the hospital since she was three days old.
 
"There were times we had to say our goodbye's and kiss her goodbye Elrod's mother, Danielle Barley, said. "Then finally they just found the diagnosis of Panhypopituitarism and Adrenal Insufficiency."
 
Elrod takes hormones and any virus or illness can land her back in the hospital.

WATCH: Jobina Fortson's report
 
"I know what it's like to be in the hospital and it's not that fun," Elrod said.

However, making bears is very fun for the 13-year-old.
 
She named the latest stuffed toy Fred.

"His ears are spread too far apart," Elrod said. "If you've ever watched Scooby Doo the movie you know Fred is a very odd person. This is his relative."
 
Elrod has another fundraiser scheduled for June 10 at Lincoln Hills Christian Church. All of the proceeds will go to Norton Children's Hospital.
 
Copyright 2017 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.