LOUISVILLE (WHAS11) -- The Highview Doll Ministry is a group of women who make hundreds of dolls every year for children in need. Each doll is hand stuffed, stitched and sewn and the ladies don't charge a penny for them.
“We make these dolls for abused or neglected children and for seriously ill children,” Mary Pearcy, Director of the Highview Doll Ministry, said.
The ministry was started in 1994. Over the last two decades the women have made thousands of dolls for children in Kentuckiana and beyond, even sending them to kids across the world.
“If we can bring a little bit of comfort to them through these dolls then we've done what God wants us to,” Pearcy said.
The group meets weekly at Pearcy's house where they embroider the dolls. They also meet twice a month at the Highview Baptist Church where the dolls are passed down the assembly line until they are complete. Each doll is touched by many hands before it ends up in a pair of small hands.
“It just does something to you when you hear about the different children that have the dolls,” said volunteer Dottie McDonald.
McDonald has been involved with the ministry for four years and says the members of the group have become her family and the dolls have become her purpose.
“I feel like I'm doing something for somebody and I love the ladies,” McDonald said.
And that sentiment can be felt around the room from the women behind each station and sewing machine.
“You know they clutch onto these dolls. It's wonderful, really,” ministry member Delores Wilkins says.
The Highview Doll Ministry produces and gives away more than 600 dolls every year. It's all about the kids but if you ask the women, they say they get more out of it themselves.
“When I heard about the child that got one and wouldn't give the doll up when she turned a teenager, it still affects me, I cried when I heard it and I think all of us did,” McDonald said.
The ministry is supported entirely through private donations and fundraisers like craft fairs. The women meet on the second and fourth Wednesday of every month.