Children build bears for charity

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The Build-A-Bear Workshop opened in Augusta Mall June 9.

Some children got in a little early.

It was a first time treat for Briana White: bringing a bear to life and adding a little love along the way.

"I feel that I can tell her anything and she can keep a secret," Briana said of the bear she built.

Build-A-Bear Workshop wants to give this kind of friendship to others.

That's why Briana made one bear that she quickly gave away.

Her bear was a special gift for the children of the Ronald McDonald House.

Before Friday's grand opening, Briana, along with about two dozen Girl Scouts, picked little partners and put all their love inside for other children.

"I think it'll make them feel special, and they won't be lonely," Briana said. "If they are the only child they'll have their friend."

"We have so many families that come in nightly that will be staying in the area because their children are receiving medical treatment, and it's just a way to build happiness to them," says Karen Phelps-Way of the Ronald McDonald House.

The children really had a lot to choose from when they built the bears, but what they were really building was a life long friendship.

Something a lot of children don't even know is headed their way.

"It'll just be wonderful, they'll be overjoyed," Phelps-Way says.

Stitching smiles on those who need them the beary most.

If you want to build a bear for a child, the first 200 guests on June 10 can make a free bear to donate to the Ronald McDonald House.

You can also build bunnies, doggies, kitties, frogs, or ponies.