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Deadline Approaching To Recognize Young Leaders For Scholarship Opportunity; Build-A-Bear Workshop Seeks Service-Minded Kids As Huggable Heroes

February is Youth Leadership Month, a time to celebrate young people who take on leadership roles within their communities, and Build-A-Bear Workshop ® is searching for its next class of Huggable Heroes ® -- inspiring young leaders who serve others and make a difference in our world. Now through February 27, nominate young leaders ages eight to 18 by visiting buildabear.com/huggableheroes or picking up an entry form at Build-A-Bear Workshop stores in the United States, Puerto Rico, and Canada.

The 10 selected Huggable Heroes will each receive $10,000 ($7,500 in the form of an educational scholarship from Build-A-Bear Workshop and $2,500 from the Build-A-Bear Workshop Foundation to be donated to the 501(c)(3) charity or Canadian cause of their choice). In addition, the Huggable Heroes will receive a trip for themselves and one parent or legal guardian to Build-A-Bear Workshop World Bearquarters, in St. Louis, where they will be celebrated for their work, participate in a professional photo shoot, and take part in a community service project.

Since Build-A-Bear Workshop first launched the program in 2004, more than 100 Huggable Heroes have been recognized, and collectively awarded nearly one million dollars in donations and scholarship money. This year, Build-A-Bear Workshop and its foundation will contribute $100,000 more to the educational development and community-minded efforts of young people who do their part with heart.

Entries will be narrowed down to 80 semifinalists in March and to 30 finalists in May. In June, 10 noteworthy young people will be selected and named 2012 Build-A-Bear Workshop Huggable Heroes.

Some of the past Huggable Heroes have built homes for the homeless in Mexico, started organizations to provide fresh produce to food shelters, built soccer fields for kids in Africa, collected books and school supplies for children in need and distributed gift bags to children with chronic illnesses.

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