Dolls for kids with disabilities

National News

WISCONSIN (KFDX/KJTL) — A Wisconsin doll maker is brightening the lives of hundreds of kids with disabilities.

Hannah Hilyard has the story.

Day-in and day-out, Amy Jandrisevits sits at her sewing machine to make dolls. But these dolls are not what we’re used to seeing.

“These are not the kids that you see in movies, these are not the kids you see in commercials,” says Hilyard. And that’s the point.

“This discussion is now on the table. Are we doing the right thing?” says Jandrisevits.

It started as a hobby four years ago. Jandrisevits made a doll for a child with an amputated leg. Since then, she has made around 400 dolls meant to look like each one of its individual recipients, no matter the skin color, gender or medical condition.

“And she does this all from her dining room you can see sewing supplies filling up her dinner table,” says Hilyard.

Jandrisevits says, “you can see my dining room has not been used for its intended purpose in a really long time.”

From her new Berlin home, she’s shipped dolls all over the world. And although she’s never seen a child get one of her dolls in person, she’s seen plenty of the magical moments on video.

The videos are endless. “Why is your baby important to you?” “Because he has hands and toes like me!”
And priceless.

“Look at her hands Rae. They’re just like yours.” And brings smiles Jandrisevits never wants to see fade.

A doll like me “when you have a talent or you have something to offer, you’ve got to use it for someone else. And I think that this is for me, this is the skill I bring to the table. I bring sewing,” says Jadrisevits.

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