Toronto, Canada, Christine and Dorian Poe – Dorian’s beloved Webkin Polar Bear, is traveling around the world to promote Autism Awareness. Autism Daily Newscast first reported on Tikko™ last October in our short piece “Forget Waldo – Where is Tikko, the stuffed bear travelling for autism?”
This is part 2 of our interview with Christine Poe, part 1 can be read here.
We asked Christine to tell us about the process of how individuals can participate in the Tikko™ campaign.
Christine shared with us that she researches autism in the areas that Tikko™ visits and then posts helpful links and information on the Tikko™’ Facebook page.
“We’re now learning about autism around the world; including the diversity of support available. For those who want to help by taking Tikko on vacation, when away, they invite the locals to come back to our Facebook page to learn more about autism. And this is how we are bringing the general public together with families living with autism! The people vacationing take fun photos of Tikko, emailing them back to me, and I create a photo album for their trip on Tikko’s Facebook page.”
There are 72 Tikko™ ’s on site and the company Ganz have kindly donated 108 bears to the Tikko™ office. Christine also aided that they have distributed some of these bears to their “Ambassadors for Autism” who also help promote Tikko™ in any way they can.
The Tikko™ Charitable Foundation, which was established this year, helps to raise money that directly benefits families living with autism,
Christine told us that the mission of the Tikko™ Charitable Foundation is to “raise funds, educate, raise awareness and support services for Autism and Children’s Brain Health.”
One such charitable is that of GiveGolf, which is taking place at present until August 18, it states on the website:
‘Givegolf is a month long fundraising event to support awareness and research for Brain Health. The event is coordinated by the Tikko Charitable Foundation, a charity dedicated to raising awareness for Autism and children’s brain health’.
The video below features an interview with Dorian.
We asked Christine how people can share their photos and stories of Tikko™ while on holiday.
Christine replied by saying;
“We LOVE when people share their stories!”
People can submit photos to the website, along with their story for their “ Tikko™ Blog”.
“We can’t guarantee all stories will be published, however, we welcome all stories for submission!”
At present anyone who is interested in borrowing a Tikko™ can contact Christine in order to borrow a Tikko™ for their vacation or special event. Then once the vacation is over Tikko™ goes home until he goes on another vacation. All photos are posted onto the Tikko™ website.
At the moment Christine is looking for looking for some amazing adventures for Tikko™
“such as Tikko’s trip on the Lancaster Bomber, or possibly a trip to space? We’d love to see Tikko at NASCAR!! For any amazing opportunities such as this, I invite people to contact me at email@example.com. We’re always looking for new ideas for our Tikko videos! So far Tikko has bungy-jumped off Macau Tower in China (the highest bungy jump in the world); skydived 10,000 ft. from an airplane; and flown with the Snowbirds over the Parliament Buildings this past Canada Day in Ottawa!”
We believe that both children and adults gain much support from Tikko™, by knowing that he has met other families touched by autism and we told Christine that Dorian must be extremely proud
“It’s hard to believe we’ve only been doing this for a little over a year and a half. Where Dorian is concerned, we’ve seen an amazing transition. He has more confidence; more friends, and feels good about himself, knowing that with Tikko, he is “making a difference”. I’m not sure if Dorian understands the concept of “pride” but we do know he is happy…and as parents, we are extremely proud of him!”
The video below, “TIKKO™- Jumps into Action for Autism Awareness!” shows how on November 21, 2013;
‘TIKKO™, along with AJ Hackett, International Bungy Jumping Master Tony O’Rourke, jumped 233 M/764 FT from Macau Tower (the highest bungy jump tower in the world; located in the Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China.) Against a wind speed of 15 kmph/NE TIKKO™ jumped into action to raise AUTISM AWARENESS!’
We would very much like to thank Christine for sharing her story with us and wish Tikko™ Travels huge success for the future.
The Tikko™ Travels website can be found here