Check out #BearsOnStairs 2019


It's not too late to help children forced to flee violent conflict in the DRC.

Send a quick email to your Federal MP and ask them to fund the DRC Humanitarian Action Plan

Aussies put their #BearsOnStairs to help remember the world's most forgotten crisis...


On the first day of the school holidays (8 April 2019), we covered the stairs of St Paul's cathedral with bears donated by Australians to symbolise children displaced by conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

The Dean of Melbourne from St Paul's Andreas Loewe, the CEO of World Vision Claire Rogers, former DRC refugee Clyde Sharady and Humphrey B. Bear celebrated with a steady stream of people who stopped by to take photos with the bears and learn more from our peaceful and furry installation for the Safe & Free campaign for refugees.

Karen Quist from the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre and Karen Elkington from the Salvo's Asylum Seeker & Refugee Service were also on hand to receive the donated teddy bears which will now be distributed to children in need they work with who've recently found safety in Melbourne.

789 Bears

Over half of the refugees fleeing the DR Congo right now are children. 480 children under five are forced to flee their homes and their country every day. But no one is talking about it and the Australian government is barely doing anything to help. That's why World Vision is dedicating this year's #BearsOnStairs to raise our voices on their behalf. 

We believe everyone has the right to be safe and free - especially children.

That's why we're advocating for the Australian Government to stop turning its back on the crisis still unfolding in the DR Congo.

To help, as a nation we must:

  1. Increase Australian Aid (currently at it's lowest in our history)
  2. Invest more Aid into helping people fleeing the DR Congo - specifically by funding the DR Congo Humanitarian Response Plan*.
  3. Increase Australia's humanitarian intake of refugees from places under extreme stress like the DR Congo. 


*The United Nations' DR Congo Humanitarian Response Plan provides emergency food, water, shelter and other essentials for over 12 million people people in urgent need from the DR Congo.  

We aim to collect 480 new or 'as-new' teddy bears. That number represents and raises awareness about the 480 DR Congolese children under five who are forced to flee their home and their country each day.1 


[1] Based on average: UNHCR Statistics 12 April - 30 January 2019

Alternatively, you can mail your bears to World Vision c/- the above address.

Please ensure your donations are:

  1. Actually bears (not other soft toys/ stuffed animals)
  2. New or in as-new condition so we can on-donate them to charities working with refugee children in Melbourne

The bears will be displayed on prominent stairs in towns and cities around Australia. Scroll down to watch our 2018 #BearsOnStairs video to get a better idea. Confirmed #BearsOnStairs events for 2019 are also listed below. 


After the events some of the teddy bears will be given to displaced children World Vision works with in the DR Congo. Most will find new homes here in Melbourne through two great domestic charities working directly with newly arrived Asylum Seekers and Refugees, your family's way of saying 'Welcome to Australia': 

  • Asylum Seeker Resource Centre
  • Salvation Army Asylum Seeker & Refugee Service


12 noon, 8 April - Stairs of St Paul's Cathedral, Swanston St, Melbourne RSVP on Facebook

Fill out the form below if you're interested in holding your own #BearsOnStairs event, would like to help us collect bears in your community, or would just like to be kept in-the-loop.

We'll email you #BearsOnStairs posters and flyers to help you with your  promotions as well add it to this webpage and on our social media.

Design Assets

Download: #BearsOnStairs Print and Online Resources (110MB)

Includes posters, flyers and social media graphics



The Australian Government can and should do more to help people around the world in the most urgent need of a fair go. To start, we must stop ignoring the crisis in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and start funding the DRC Humanitarian Action Plan. 

Email your MP about increasing Australian Aid and funding the DRC Humanitarian Action Plan

Bears on Stairs 2018

On the 13th of February, 2018 we held Australia's first #BEARSONSTAIRS event at St Paul’s Cathedral, Melbourne which included refugee musical duo The Travellers, World VIsion Chief Advocate Tim Costello and Australian Celebrity Humphrey B. Bear!

Photos:  Kate Geraghty, Sydney Morning Herald and Brianna Piazza, World Vision Australia

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Find out how World Vision is helping the millions of children affected by the crisis in the DRC.