FROM LEFT: Marlia Griffith, 2, of Ballina, with Nicole Eldridge, who helped set up a tea party display at the Teddy Bears’ Picnic; Poppy Tindley, 4, of Meerschaum Vale with her mum Sara and teddy Coco Bear; Mattaya Martin, of Ballina, with her baby teddy and Jack the Bear; Tameeka Kahler, 5, of Ballina gives her bear Sha-la-la a big hug.
FROM LEFT: Marlia Griffith, 2, of Ballina, with Nicole Eldridge, who helped set up a tea party display at the Teddy Bears’ Picnic; Poppy Tindley, 4, of Meerschaum Vale with her mum Sara and teddy Coco Bear; Mattaya Martin, of Ballina, with her baby teddy and Jack the Bear; Tameeka Kahler, 5, of Ballina gives her bear Sha-la-la a big hug.

Kids' joy at teddy bears' picnic day

IT COULDN'T have been a finer day for a Teddy Bears' Picnic in Ballina yesterday, with numerous local families and their plush friends enjoying the free activities at Missingham Park.

The event was part of National Child Protection Week and aimed to connect families with community organisations such as playgroups, health networks and library services.

Kiddies got to don oversized helmets and get an inside look in a fire truck thanks to the local Rural Fire Services. Nicole Eldridge, a child and youth librarian at the Richmond-Tweed regional library, handed out free books to a future generation of bookworms. “We've signed so many families up to the library today,” Ms Eldridge said.

Ms Eldridge said it was impossible to pick a favourite bear.

Family worker at the Ballina/Byron Family Centre, Peter Rawson, said the sight of kids having fun in a safe, healthy and supportive environment was a great way to promote National Child Protection Week.

“The event is a great way to promote family services. A day like this emphasises that children should be a priority in our community,” he said.



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