Will you run or walk for those who can’t in this years Mini Marathon?

With just a few weeks until the Cork Women’s Mini Marathon it’s time to get into gear and what better way to get motivated than by joining team Dogs for Disabled?  We are running and walking for those who can’t run or walk for themselves, and if you’re not running or walking then maybe you would consider sponsoring one of our two legged or four legged participants?   Dogs of the Disabled is the only charity of its kind in Ireland and has been providing dogs to children and adults with physical disabilities for over a decade. Over 80% of the charity’s clients are children, between the ages of 6 and 12 years, living with severe physical disabilities which effect their independence and social interaction.  Our dogs are specially trained to assist a physically disabled person to carry out a range of practical tasks in order to achieve greater independence. These everyday tasks include opening and closing doors, picking up dropped items, emptying the washing machine and helping a child with severe walking difficulties to walk with greater ease and balance.  At Dogs for the Disabled we are driven by our belief in a better world for our clients, a world where they are active members and not limited by their disability and we do this through the provision of our multi-talented assistance/therapy dogs. The feeling of not always have to ask for help for simple everyday tasks, is empowering, develops confidence and allows for the persons true gifts to shine through. The range of services provided by assistance and therapy dogs has steadily increased over the past few decades, and whilst other countries have embraced the use of dogs for those living with Alzheimer’s and Dementia, Ireland has been slow to utilise assistance dogs in this way. Recognising this gap, Dogs for the Disabled are currently undertaking a pilot programme in this area. Over the past year we have started to train dogs to assist people with Alzheimer’s and dementia, the specific tasks and techniques that the dogs are trained for will differ in some applications, but there are important common features in what is required of a dementia-assistance dog to give useful therapeutic outcomes. Two of our highly skilled dogs are currently working alongside therapists in St. Otterton’s Hospital, Waterford, whilst a third is in training and currently living in a domestic situation with a dementia sufferer. With 210 dogs nationwide and 150 currently out working, it costs the charity €15,000 to train and support each Assistance Dog.   Dogs for the Disabled receive no government funding, relying completely on the generosity of sponsorship, donations and fundraising, and the dogs are partnered with disabled people at no cost to the recipient.  To be part of our team on September 24th, you must register for your place directly on the Mini Marathon website, and then contact us on 021 431 6627 info@dogsfordisabled.ie for your sponsorship pack You can find more information about Dogs for the Disabled at:  dogsfordisabled.ie www.facebook.com/IrishDogsForDisabled/DFD marathon FullSizeRender

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