Talk about a fun way to celebrate a leader in our fight against COVID—and encourage kids to trust in science.

By Zara Hanawalt
August 12, 2020
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Dr. Fauci Plush Doll
Illustration by Francesca Spatola; Photo Courtesy of Bleacher Creature Toys
| Credit: Illustration by Francesca Spatola; Photo Courtesy of Bleacher Creature Toys

They say not all heroes wear capes, and that's never felt as true as it does right now, with healthcare workers, essential employees, and scientific experts marching to the front lines in our fight against COVID.

So how do we honor those heroes? Bleacher Creatures, a small company that creates cuddly toys to honor pop culture figures, has one idea. The brand is working to honor the most visible COVID hero of all: Anthony Fauci, M.D., director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

This isn't just a sweet way to celebrate Dr. Fauci for all his contributions—it's also a fun, age-appropriate way to teach children about the importance of science.

As parents, we're constantly dealing with a difficult dimension of this pandemic—talking to our children about what's happening in the world is not easy. And since we're all grappling with the newness of the situation, there are few child-friendly resources out there to help us with this task. But this cuddly toy in Dr. Fauci's likeness just might be the ticket: Imagine giving your child this toy to make such an important figure in the COVID crisis seem more accessible. This could give parents a great tool for encouraging kids to believe in the science of it all.

Bleacher Creature Toys has launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds that will make production of this toy possible.

"The Dr. Fauci Bleacher Creature is a fond tribute to a public figure whom we admire immensely," a press release for the campaign reads. "We want to show this embattled hero that he has our support, and we hope that others who feel the same way will enjoy this plush figure as much as we do! The Dr. Fauci Bleacher Creature is a great gift for fans of science and current events [and] it is a collectible that adults and children alike can enjoy and share."

Bleacher Creatures has created dolls to resemble other pop cultural touchstones like Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Pope Francis, and Bob Ross. The design for the Dr. Fauci toy is 10 inches tall, stands on its own, and is made of plush material.

Parents of the world, this sounds like the perfect thing to have on hand when you speak with your children about the current state of the pandemic—and it could serve as a constant reminder of how important expert guidance is as we work to stop the spread of COVID.

Donating to this Kickstarter campaign will earn you your very own Dr. Fauci plush (or multiple iterations of it, if you're willing to shell out more). And if the item does make it onto the market, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to COVID relief research.

"We are well aware that there are many skeptics out there who don't believe that COVID-19 is nearly as great a threat as science suggests," the campaign's press release reads. "We are committed to spreading the facts, not the virus! That is why we are putting our money where our mouths are—should we succeed in raising enough money to create the Dr. Fauci Bleacher Creature, 10 percent of our proceeds will be donated to COVID research endeavors."