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Tumi the Talking Tiger is a toy tiger with a pouch that holds a portable mp3 player. Containing audio recordings, the Tiger is designed to tell traumatised children about God's love for them.
Recently, GRN South Africa received this story from a worker in a children's home in South Africa:
"Weekly on a Tuesday I see Ricky* for counselling. Ricky is a sweet, 10-year-old boy who loves to play and just be a young boy. This particular Tuesday was very special. When Ricky came for our counselling session, he took a liking to one of our hand puppets that looks like a pig. He cheerfully played with the hand puppet singing, "It's so nice to serve the Lord...It's so nice to serve the Lord". Once in the therapy room, he started talking to me through the hand puppet. I immediately grabbed Tumi Tiger and responded to Ricky through Tumi. He became very interested in Tumi and what was hiding in her belly. I showed him that Tumi can talk and so turned on the speaker in Tumi's belly. Ricky gently placed Tumi on his lap and listened carefully as Tumi spoke. He held her softly, stroking her gently under her right leg.
I was amazed when this 10-year-old-boy became fascinated with what Tumi had to say, and that he started to interact with her. When Tumi asked what the meaning of his name is, Ricky softly whispered, "I don't know" into Tumi's left ear. I quietly enjoyed this special moment between Ricky and the tiger. Tumi asked him to count her stripes; he carefully twisted her around and said: "Yes there are so many stripes!" Before he could start counting, she answered "7 stripes!" He giggled. When Tumi stopped her conversation, I asked Ricky what he has learned from Tumi. He answered: "I am special."
This was a very special and memorable moment. The interaction with Tumi led to our conversation about what Ricky would like the meaning of his name to be, as both of us did not know the answer. He replied: "A special boy and a child of God."
"We praise God for this and other stories like it because GRN recordings are being used to change people's lives. GRN South Africa recently placed 20 Tumi Tigers in a hospital for children to listen to and play with. Please continue to pray for Ricky and other children who have suffered trauma, that they may know God's love for them."
GRN Australia currently has two of the old version of Tumi (with players) for purchase at a special price of $50.00 plus postage and handling. Go to tumitiger.com for more details. Consider whether your church could have a Tumi at the ready, waiting for a child in need.
*Not his real name