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Cubgratulations™ to the 2011 Huggable Heroes!

It is our pleasure to recognize, honor and cele-bear-ate the 2011 Build-A-Bear Workshop® Huggable Heroes.  Below are the inspirational stories of some very pawsome kids!

2011 Huggable Heroes

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Armin M., 17, Richmond Hill, ON

After traveling to Honduras to help build an extension on a hospital, Armin created A Pencil for a Student, A Future for a Nation, a nonprofit organization that works to improve the quality of education in developing nations. Armin has also volunteered over 1500 hours at the Sunnybrook Hospital, York Central Hospital and Mariann Elderly Home.

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Cassidy Megan M., 12, Halifax, NS

Four years ago, Cassidy Megan founded Purple Day for Epilepsy to promote epilepsy awareness. Purple Day has partnered with the Epilepsy Association of Nova Scotia and the Anita Kaufmann Foundation in the USA. Purple Day is now recognized internationally with supporters in Spain, Iran, Australia, Madrid, England, Africa, Cyprus and other countries worldwide.

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Deventae M., 15, Coeburn, VA

Deventae volunteers as coach and referee for youth sports, tutors summer school students, raises money for cancer patients and delivers lunches (24,000 to date) to children in need during the summer. He has raised $21,000 to benefit youth sports and more than $20,000 for Relay for Life and other organizations that benefit cancer patients.

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Jasmine B., 18, Chesapeake, VA

Jasmine started a program called Today’s Readers, Future Leaders to collect books and school supplies for children in need. She devotes approximately 60 hours per month to gathering, cleaning, sorting and delivering books and supplies where needed. So far, Jasmine has collected more than 6,000 items for her program.

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Justin C., 18, El Paso, TX

Justin helps build houses for the homeless in Juarez, Mexico. His efforts include raising $48,000 for building materials by making presentations to organizations and contacting business owners. He also has recruited 75 volunteers to assist. To date, his efforts have helped build 18 homes.

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Kyle W., 18, Danville, CA

Kyle co-founded FUNDaFIELD.org when he was just 13 years old to raise money to help build soccer fields for kids in Africa. FUNDaFIELD.org has raised more than $138,000, constructed eight soccer fields in Africa, held four soccer tournaments, and delivered uniforms, soccer balls and other necessary supplies.

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Nicholas M., 18, Clayton, NC

Nicholas founded and helps run the Nickelby Project which provides comfort items and gift bags to children with a chronic or life threatening illness. He manages all aspects involved in running a nonprofit foundation including fundraising, securing sponsors and coordinating volunteers. So far, the Nickelby Project has delivered more than 10,000 gift bags.

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Rujul Z., 16, Plainsboro, NJ

Rujul co-started Drinking Water for India to build tube-wells in rural India. He speaks across the country to encourage involvement and support. Now, 23 schools support Drinking Water for India and, to date, the organization has raised more than $35,000 and built 31 wells in India, providing access to clean water for 55,000 villagers.

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Shannon H.M., 18, Basking Ridge, NJ

Shannon founded Shannon's After-School Reading Exchange (SHARE) to empower girls in Africa through education. She has volunteered in Tanzania to create and fill libraries with donated books. To date, she has raised $200,000 for four libraries, collected 23,000 books, and brought electricity to three schools.

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Shaun S., 17, River Falls, WI

Shaun co-founded Grow-to-Share to provide fresh produce to local food shelters to help feed those in need. He recruits volunteers to help plant, harvest and maintain gardens. Shaun organizes an annual pancake breakfast fundraiser to cover expenses. Grow-to-Share has donated more than 10 tons of fresh produce.