The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a lot of things and events on hold. It also led to protocols of social distancing and quarantine. Amid such pervasive effects of the virus, no one could blame Olivia Carlson, together with millions of people in the world, for becoming weary and even disheartened. Yet through all that she saw and experienced, Olivia never lost her sense of hope and conviction that QT Bears is one way to fight the ongoing turmoils. And although Olivia started small, she knew that a larger audience would benefit all, giving a sense of optimism for families and individuals.
Turbulent times are opportunities for everyone to thrive. They are moments when one small effort to influence can be much more powerful. Olivia had this in mind as she started to create QT Bears, which stands for Quarantine Bears. Each 10 inch QT Bear comes with a customizable color or pattern face mask for a sense of individuality.
The bear also includes a handwritten note from QT Bear itself, friendly tips on how to stay healthy, and directions for an Instagram photo challenge.
Efforts of her Instagram challenge, known as Where’s QT Today? includes entertaining families and building relationships while stuck at home. It also urges children to stay busy with their new QT Bears and share them with a post online to help others spread the invitation. The challenge is ongoing and gaining attention with various pictures of children doing homework with their bears, riding their bikes with their bears, climbing trees, doing splits, dancing, playing video games, and so much more. What makes it more inspiring is how the children are smiling while doing so, showing that the fear has been replaced with enjoyment and enthusiasm.
Additionally, QT Bears was recognized by the Boston Celtics and Massachusetts State Lottery in their “Heroes Among Us” campaign.
When asked about her inspiration to create, Olivia says, “I had the idea to create these QuaranTine Bears, in hopes that they would provide comfort to kids and give them a better understanding of what’s happening in our world.” She adds, “My mission is for QT Bears to show kids that it’s okay and not scary to wear a face mask!”
Olivia’s dad passed away due to pancreatic cancer in August 2018. While alive, him and Olivia made build-a-bears together, where they placed hearts in each other’s bears. Olivia keeps and finds comfort in her bear. Thus, she was inspired by this significant event to use teddy bears to comfort others during these hard times.
Originally starting with only six plushy, fuzzy, bears, QT Bears exceeded the creator’s hopes. With its popularity, the cute bears are visibly helping children and families more than one could imagine. It has allowed people nationwide to find positivity and touch each other’s lives in little ways. Olivia hopes to instill in everyone’s hearts her appreciation for the support they have given.
During such negative and depressing times, it is important to continue to lift others, exactly like what the QT bears do.Learn more information about QT Bears and how it lifts others by visiting their website.