A startup company named The Doll For All has introduced a line of dolls designed to reflect the experiences of children with limb differences.
The Chattanooga, Tennessee-based startup aims to foster inclusivity and encourage children to embrace diversity with their products.
Currently in the prototype stage, the dolls come in two models, Evie and Max, both featuring limb differences.
They can be customized with a variety of accessories like prosthetics, wheelchairs, and hearing aids to cater to a broader range of disabilities.
“For us, it’s paramount that every child sees themselves reflected in the toys they play with,” stated Marsha Roberts, Company President of The Doll For All. “Our dolls are not just about making children with disabilities feel acknowledged and valued, but also about teaching children without disabilities the importance of inclusion.”
The company’s crowdfunding campaign adds: “Kids need to see toys and dolls like themselves. Celebrating uniqueness builds awareness and increases self-esteem.”
Inspiration for The Doll For All Corporation stemmed from the story of Aysha, who underwent significant medical procedures as a child.
During her frequent hospital visits, she encounters many children with life-changing disabilities. But, crucially, she noticed a lack of dolls that represented how these children looked as a result of their limb differences.
“She realized these kids didn’t have a doll that looked like them, and she dreamed of making a doll that could be altered for whatever disability or medical needs a child may have,” the company’s website reads. “After many years, her dream is finally coming true.”
Spotting a gap in the market for a more inclusive toy, Aysha and her mom, Julie, set about looking for someone to team up with to make their dream a reality.
That’s where current Company President Marsha Roberts came in. The former nurse is spearheading the company alongside inventor Rick Harrison.
Rick is the brainchild behind the multi-articulated 18″ dolls the company produces.
Together, the team has set about crowdfunding batches of the dolls to connect them to children. A single doll costs upwards of $275, while a custom doll comes in at $325.
The dolls are all hand-produced in the United States and Roberts wants to keep it that way.
“Since they’re individually assembled to look so much like the child that cherishes them, they’re intended to be passed down from generation to generation — a legacy doll,” Roberts says in a crowdfunding video.
To date, the company’s crowdfunding has seen more than $5,000 pledged from 23 backers – ahead of their original $4,500 target.
The Doll For All represents one of several companies actively creating toys that are more inclusive and reflect the experiences of children with disabilities. Recent years have seen a growing movement advocating for more diverse toys, and The Doll For All stands at the forefront of this movement.