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Linda Thomas
Emilie.jpg
Six-year-old Emilie Parker was one of the 20 children who died in massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary. Emilie's father, Robbie Parker, released this photo to the press because it's his favorite picture of his little girl, and it's how he wants to remember her. Memorial funds are being set up for many of the victims' families. (Photo courtesy Emilie Parker Fund)

Send a bear, sign a card. How to help the people of Newtown

Helpless, but not hopeless.

Many are wondering what they can to do show they care about the people who lost little loved ones in the Sandy Hook Elementary massacre.

From a Ballard mom sending teddy bears to Connecticut, to signing a national sympathy card, here are some ways to help those who are grieving.

An online national sympathy card through Causes.com has more than 1.4 million signatures.

The card to the Community of Newtown, Connecticut, including the families of the victims and the survivors and their families begins:

Our Sincere Condolences.

We wish to express our deepest sympathies to all of the families of those lost, to the survivors and their families, and to the others impacted by the senseless and unthinkable tragedy that unfolded at Sandy Hook Elementary School. We cannot begin to comprehend the depth of your sadness and grief. Please know that we care deeply for you and we join with you in sharing your sorrow and pain. We only hope that you receive some measure of comfort in the knowledge that we, and an entire nation, stand with you during this extraordinarily difficult time.

Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

David Paine is the man behind the simple idea of sending a national sympathy card. He is the co-founder of 9/11 Day.

If you are inclined to donate money, there are several funds set up including the Newtown Memorial Fund.

The family of Sandy Hook Elementary's principal, Dawn Hochsprung, created a memorial fund for the educator who died trying to stop the gunman.

Dawn Lafferty Hochsprung Memorial Fund

CT Teachers Credit Union

P.O. Box 2121

Waterbury, CT 06722

Families have also set up funds on behalf of their children who died. In some cases the funds will help the families financially so they can take off work to grieve and bury their children. Others plan to use the funds to create scholarships in their children's names.

The family of Olivia Engel, 6, created the Friends of the Engel Family Fund.

The family of Emilie Parker, 6, Emilie Parker Fund.

The family of Noah Pozner, 6, created Noah's Ark of Hope Fund to provide counseling, education and basic needs for his four siblings.

A Ballard mother wants to send a teddy bear to every child at Sandy Hook Elementary.

Hollie Butler, who has a 7-year-old daughter and 10-year-old son, says she felt "completely devastated" following the mass shooting.

"Teddy bears are a familiar and much beloved symbol of comfort in childhood. This fundraiser seeks to raise enough money to buy a brown stuffed bear for every child at the school, as a gesture of collective support," Butler writes.

"The children who have survived this experience are going to live with the memory for the rest of their lives. They will have to find a way to trust the world again, to be a kid again. Let's give them something to carry with them," she says.

With more than 600 children attending Sandy Hook Elementary, the family hopes to raise $10,000 to fund the A bear for every child.

Butler tells me so far 23 people have donated $875 to the effort.

By LINDA THOMAS

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About Linda
Linda is the morning news anchor and features reporter for KIRO Radio. This is her local news blog, with an emphasis on social media, technology, Northwest companies, education, parenting, and anything else that grabs her attention.

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