What started as a simple request from a parent has now grown into a thriving non-profit business for a Wisconsin mother who looks like dolls for children with illnesses and disabilities.
In 2015, doll maker Amy Jandrisevits was asked by another mother to design a unique doll for her daughter, who had lost her leg due to amputation.
When Amy shared an image of the amputated doll on her Facebook page, she was quickly flooded with orders and requests from other parents who wanted their own children to have dolls that looked exactly like them, differ and so.
Something for Everyone: Amy Jandrisevits, 46, is a doll maker in Wisconsin who works from her dining room
Including: she makes tailor-made lookalike dolls for children who do not see themselves represented in toys in the store shelves
Unique: Amy makes dolls that suit the skin condition, amputation, illness or disability of a child, so that they too can hold someone who looks like them
& # 39; Differences make children feel isolated and assessed, & # 39; said Amy People. & # 39; With the doll, a child sees: & # 39; I'm not the only one who looks like this … and pretty enough to be a doll. & # 39;
Represented: & # 39; With the doll, a child sees: & # 39; I'm not the only one who looks like this … and pretty enough to be a doll & # 39 ;, Amy said.
Amy owns A Doll Like Me, where she makes custom dolls that look like the child she will receive.
Orders are usually placed for children who don't find dolls that look like them in stores, due to health issues that make their faces, limbs or skin look different.
& # 39; Scars, birthmarks, limb differences, skin color, medical equipment … these are all things that you rarely see in dolls, but for children who have them, it is everything, & # 39; said Amy.
Usually Amy charges around $ 100 to make each doll and send it to a person at home.
But if a parent is unable to pay the full price of the doll, Amy pays the rest of the allowances from her own pocket – and generous donations from others.
& # 39; I am a doll maker who believes that every child, regardless of gender, ethnicity, age, medical issue or body type, should look at the sweet face of a doll and see their own face, & # 39; Amy explained to one GoFundMe page that she has set up for her business.
Money earned with the GoFundMe page goes directly to families who cannot afford to pay the full cost of a doll for their child.
Busy bee: Amy makes the dolls in her own dining room and now has a waiting list of approximately two years for each custom item
Make it affordable: the dolls usually cost around $ 100, but Amy waives the price for parents who can't afford it
Important: & # 39; I am a doll maker who believes that every child, regardless of gender, ethnicity, age, medical issue or body type, should look into the sweet face of a doll and see their own face & # 39 ;, Amy wrote her GoFundMe page
Unbelievable: Amy has sewn an estimated 400 customized dolls for children
Spreading the love: the money earned with her GoFundMe page is used for doll orders from families who cannot afford the costs
& # 39; It's so important … if we really want to talk about the overall health of a child, we need to promote healthy and positive self-identity & # 39 ;, the woman wrote when she explained why she covers part of the costs .
From August, Amy has sewn an estimated 400 custom dolls for children from her own dining room – while balancing her role as a mother with three children at home.
The interest in her business has grown to such an extent that Amy now has a two-year waiting list for people looking for a unique doll for their own children.
But she will move potential buyers to the top of the list for every child with a terminal illness.
& # 39; In the end, I don't want a parent to pay for something that is so important. If we start to consider mental health as a necessary part of medical care, this is the key & # 39 ;, she wrote.
& # 39; My ultimate goal is to fulfill every pop order that comes in and not the families have to pay for it. I think a doll is a tangible way to show kindness. & # 39;
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