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Celebrating 30 years of life changing devotion

Dogs for the Disabled - Fri, 2018-01-19 14:35

2018 is a milestone year for Oxfordshire-based Dogs for Good as the charity proudly celebrates its 30th anniversary. Over the years the work it carries out has transformed the lives of thousands of adults and children with disabilities.

Since 1988, Dogs for Good has created no less than 875 assistance dog partnerships, run many hundreds of family dog workshops, worked with schools and hospitals in the community and been involved in many special projects.

In addition to assistance dog partnerships, Dogs for Good has led the way in developing how dogs can help people with additional needs. In 2004, the charity introduced the first assistance dogs for children to the UK, the first dogs being trained to support children with physical disabilities and shortly afterwards they developed their service for children with autism. Most recently, Dogs for Good has worked in collaboration with Alzheimer Scotland to train dementia assistance dogs.

In order to help more people and recognising that not everyone is able to benefit from the help of a dog 24:7, the charity now trains activity and therapy dogs to work with specialist handlers in settings such as hospitals, schools and social care settings. Through this work, Dogs for Good supports people with a wide range of conditions including learning disabilities, dementia, physical disabilities and autism.

Through Family Dog workshops the charity is able to provide advice and support to help families with a child with autism get the most out of their relationship with their pet dog.

Dogs for Good (formerly Dogs for the Disabled) was the brainchild of founder, Frances Hay, herself disabled and a lifelong animal lover and dog owner. She recognised that the strong bond she enjoyed with her own dogs helped in many ways to maintain her independence and also, that her dog was able to carry out small but vitally important tasks for her such as picking up dropped items and helping to steady her while walking and balance her getting up from a seated position.

This realisation, knowledge and vision inspired Frances to start the charity in 1988, work began in earnest and one year later, a number of physically disabled adults were partnered with dogs. The impact of these partnerships was immediately clear – dogs can make a big difference to improving people’s lives and offer both practical and emotional support.

Dogs for Good client, Ann, is partnered with assistance dog, Twickers and explains: “I’d loved my pet dogs in the past but the bond you get with these dogs is something else. Your self-worth is elevated because you have to care for another life; grooming, walking, feeding, rather than being the one that receives care. Having the dog doesn’t just give me confidence, it gives my husband and daughters confidence, too, because they know I’m not ever on my own. Before, I was just a lady in a wheelchair. Now, I’m Ann with the lovely, clever, amazing dog and my disability fades into the background.”

Dogs for Good Chief Executive, Peter Gorbing says: “Looking ahead to the next 30 years, we intend to share our knowledge and experience with more people as well as providing services directly to those that desperately need it. We’ll use digital and online technologies to support the work and will continue to innovate, share best practice and collaborate with others.”

Dogs for Good is always keen to welcome new recruits who are able to volunteer their time and energy to help create more life-changing partnerships and further the work it carries out. There are many ways to get involved from caring for a puppy or dog or joining a local supporters group.

Find out more about the last 30 years of Dogs for Good.

The post Celebrating 30 years of life changing devotion appeared first on Dogs for Good.

Categories: Charity News

Children with Autism and Dogs for Good benefit from £60,000 grant from Oxfordshire Freemasons

Dogs for the Disabled - Wed, 2017-12-06 12:24

Forty Oxfordshire families with children with an autism diagnosis are set to benefit from a generous £60,000 grant from the Oxfordshire Freemasons. They are part of 150 children with autism who will benefit nationwide.

The grant, awarded to Dogs for Good, will be used over the course of three years and will go directly into the PAWS Family Dog workshops run by the charity. The workshops give advice and support to help families with a child with autism get the most out of their relationship with their family dog.

The series of three, one-day workshops use a combination of practical demonstrations, discussions, hands-on learning and course hand-outs to demonstrate the significant positive effect a well-trained dog can have on the behaviour and development of autistic children.

Oxford-based Alison Pearce, whose daughter has benefitted from the service said: At the first workshop, I was amazed by the many ways in which a pet dog could be trained to help an autistic child and how this would benefit my daughter.  I sat there thinking ‘this could be life-changing.’ It was also beneficial to meet and talk to other parents of children with autism.  I remember thinking ‘I’m not alone, these people really understand.’

“The help from Dogs for Good doesn’t just end after the course. We have continuing support and advice from the Dogs for Good team, and the help my daughter receives from her dog continues to increase.”

The grant from Oxfordshire Freemasons comes through the Masonic Charitable Foundation, which is funded by Freemasons, their families and friends, from across England and Wales.

Andrew Keech from Oxfordshire Freemasons said: “I’m very pleased we’re able to help Dogs for Good who do such wonderful work with autistic children and their families. Thanks to them, many hundreds of people have seen a huge improvement in their quality of life.”

Find out more about our Family Dog service.

The post Children with Autism and Dogs for Good benefit from £60,000 grant from Oxfordshire Freemasons appeared first on Dogs for Good.

Categories: Charity News

Year End Sportive

Jole Rider - Sun, 2017-11-26 11:42

Year End Sportive 

Your last ride this year!
A non-competitive cycle challenge - with 2 fully signposted courses

Sunday 31 December 2017
The Bike Shed, Tetbury, Gloucestershire GL8 8LD *

Unfortunately, we have had to cancel the Year End Sportive.

While it is unlikely that there will still be snow on the route on the day, the snow in this area none the less has impacted on the event. The Route Check and Assessment, which encompasses all aspects of riders' Health and Safety, had to be cancelled due to the weather conditions. These conditions, and continuing snowfall, have also impacted on the process of signing the route .

Entry fees paid for this ride will be carried over to a future Sportive. The first of these will be at the end of March.
We also have an event in June, one in August and another in September.

Dare we say it, another Year End Sportive will be scheduled for next December - on the basis that we get lucky!


 Route Options:
30 miles [48km] - the Christmas Payback
- relatively flat and easy going for the casual rider

50 miles [80km] - the New Year Payforward
- a mixture of flat and rolling hills for intermediate riders

All our routes travel through some of the most beautiful Cotswold countryside.
Our routes avoid busy roads and use quiet lanes with very little traffic.
Additionally, our routes are scenic and a decent mix of hills and flat.
This is not just our opinion but the opinion of riders in our previous events.

Route Features: 
Fully signposted 
Feed stations 

Venue Facilities:
Pre-ride mechanical support | Toilets | FREE parking at Event Venue

For operational reasons the event is now going to start and finish at The Bike Shed, Tetbury.

The Cotswolds is well known for its beautiful countryside, gentle wolds, with river valleys, water meadows, beech woods and sleepy limestone villages. For this ride we have laid out 2 especially lovely routes. 

Our policy for routing your ride means that we positively avoid main roads where we can and identify quiet country lanes with spectacular views. We also prefer to vary our routes, so no two rides with us are the same!

Selecting BOOK NOW will take you to the Event Page on the
British Cycling website, where you will find full event details and online registration.
To enter the event via British Cycling's online registration system,
you will need a British Cycling user account which is free to set up.

You can also enter on the day, as long as there are still places.
For details of this select BOOK NOW.

Here is a list of frequently asked questions
about British Cycling's online registration system.

A minimum of £1 per rider will be donated to JOLE RIDER.  

The Organiser of this Event is Pireaus M3 in assocation with British Cycling.



 THE ROUTES: rated at 92.2%

     A very pleasant and well thought out route
     Revealed the beauty of the Cotswolds
     Unlike many Sportives, avoided busy roads
     Good quiet roads, very little traffic
     Scenic and a decent mix of hills and flat
     The route took me to places I'd never have gone to otherwise

THE SIGNAGE: rated at 93.2%
     Best signed course I've ever been on
     Signage was top notch
     Brilliant to know I can trust the signage on your routes
     GPX files provided added confidence

THE FOOD: rated at 91.6%
     Loved the pie and beans at the end. First class pie!
     Best stocked feed stations ever!
     Free tea and coffee well received
     Really couldn't have been better!
     The best feed stations! Great munchies and lovely volunteers!

OVERALL EXPERIENCE: rated at 95.8%
     I've done a few Sportives - this was very well organised
     Fabulous welcome and assistance from marshalls
     First class; a wonderful, friendly event
     Spot on! Best organised Sportive!
     Excellent. Well organised and friendly
     Friendly staff, good venue

     Hills not spread out enough over the route
     I do question how many people read the 14 page info sheet


Categories: Charity News

Dogs for Good open new pet store

Dogs for the Disabled - Mon, 2017-11-13 16:41

Lisa and Thomas with assistance dog Vito, were VIP guests at the grand opening of Pets at Home inside Tesco Extra in Durham on Saturday 11th November.

The family officially opened the new store, before being invited to choose a selection of Pets at Home’s toys and treats for Vito.

Store manager Jill Allen, has been with Pets at Home for over two years, having previously worked at the Alnwick branch.

Jill said: “What a fantastic start!  Our opening weekend went even better than we had hoped and it was great to have Lisa, Thomas and Vito attend the launch and show them all the products we have on offer at the store.

“Our new store features thousands of dedicated pet products for not only local dogs and cats but small animals, fish and local wildlife too.”

All colleagues at the new store receive extensive training on pet care and pet knowledge which is endorsed by City & Guilds, providing a stamp of approval that demonstrates the value of its training. Colleagues at the Durham store are dedicated to providing the highest levels of customer service, and are trained to offer great pet care tips and product knowledge.

Dogs for Good volunteer, Lisa Dixon said “Thomas and I were really excited to be cutting the ribbon at the launch event for the brand new Durham Pets at Home store.  It gave us an opportunity to show our appreciation for all the fantastic support Pets at Home gives to Dogs for Good.

“Vito was also very excited to meet lots of new people, getting loads of fuss and sniffing out a few treats!”

Customers who attended the launch also enjoyed fun family activities such as face painting and a balloon modeller was on hand to make a variety of different animals.

The store which is located inside the Tesco Extra on Dragonville Industrial Estate includes a pet pharmacy which will provide a large range of health care products including supplements, first aid, dental care and flea and worms treatments.

The new store opening hours will be 8am-10pm Monday – Saturday and 10am-4pm on Sundays.

Founded in 1991, Pets at Home has more than 430 sites across the UK employing more than 6,000 people and is proud to have won The Sunday Times Top 25 Best Big Companies to Work For 2013.

The post Dogs for Good open new pet store appeared first on Dogs for Good.

Categories: Charity News

Maria describes her Ecuador earthquake horror – pinned to the ground by a fallen fridge. Now homeless for a second time due to natural disasters, her simple plea is ‘I need help’

Shelterbox News - Tue, 2016-05-10 23:00

For Maria Bele Artiaga, a wife and mother in her 50s, the massive earthquake that ripped much of Ecuador apart on 16 April was her second brush with natural disaster. She vividly describes her narrow escapes to ShelterBox responders, there to help Ecuadorians recover and rebuild.

Categories: Charity News

ShelterBox on top of the world - intrepid Brian Jackson almost completes his unclimbed Himalayan peaks adventure – beaten back by glacier and weather

Shelterbox News - Sun, 2016-05-08 23:00

ShelterBox fundraiser Brian Jackson may have fallen just short of standing on the summit of Om Tso Go in Nepal, but he still ‘got to walk where no person has walked before and see views no person has seen before’

Categories: Charity News

Syrian Kamounia camp bombing. UK aid agency ShelterBox – ‘The most inhuman act to use women and children fleeing war as military targets’

Shelterbox News - Thu, 2016-05-05 23:00

While the UN decides whether to classify an air strike on a makeshift camp for displaced people in northern Syria as a war crime, UK agency ShelterBox condemns the targeting of families on the run from war

Categories: Charity News

Soldiers will cycle and swim to Paris for ShelterBox – without ever leaving Rutland!

Shelterbox News - Thu, 2016-04-28 23:00

Next Wednesday soldiers from 7 Regiment Royal Logistics Corps have set themselves the gruelling task of cycling and swimming the equivalent distance from their barracks to Paris - over 380 miles.

Categories: Charity News

Just two days left to win Isle of Wight Festival VIP glamping tickets. – As the outdoor festival season begins, ShelterBox urges you to ‘love your tent’

Shelterbox News - Wed, 2016-04-27 23:00

Of course ShelterBox loves tents. And so do the one million people we have helped to shelter after disaster. But now, as a summer of music festivals gets underway, we have joined a national campaign to make sure festival-goers and campers leave sites pitch perfect

Categories: Charity News

Ecuador’s shelter and water crisis – ‘The situation is much worse than we had anticipated.’ ShelterBox team sees children begging in the streets with empty water bottles, and fields suffocated by ‘black water’

Shelterbox News - Tue, 2016-04-26 23:00

There is a new urgency in the aid programme for the coastal communities of Ecuador following the massive earthquake on 16 April. Flooding had already poisoned crops around Portoviejo, and infrastructure damage has now left families without safe drinking water

Categories: Charity News

‘The magnetism that draws you back’ - A message from Nepal to ShelterBox from supporter Deborah Holden, one year after Everest’s most deadly day

Shelterbox News - Sat, 2016-04-23 23:00

While her sister Amanda decides the fate of contestants on ‘Britain’s Got Talent’, ShelterBox supporter Deborah Holden has returned to the scene of her narrowest escape. It is one year on from the deadly earthquake that triggered an Everest avalanche. She says, ‘Not coming back to Nepal was never an option’.

Categories: Charity News

ShelterBox team in Ecuador traveling to quake zone to assess need. Thunderstorms, landslides, continuing tremors, impassable roads - all challenge the search for the missing

Shelterbox News - Fri, 2016-04-22 23:00

As the death toll rises and disease fears grow, UK disaster relief agency ShelterBox is talking to government officials and colleague aid agencies about how, and where, to respond most effectively to shelter needs. A team is visiting the worst affected areas.

Categories: Charity News

As liberation anniversary approaches a moving personal account of life in Dachau concentration camp is published, supporting ShelterBox

Shelterbox News - Thu, 2016-04-21 23:00

ShelterBox often sees life in the raw - after disasters, in war zones, transit camps and in the plight of refugees. Now the UK charity is set to benefit from sales of a moving personal account of life in a Nazi concentration camp in WW2. It is a remarkable read.

Categories: Charity News

UK disaster relief agency ShelterBox sends a team to Ecuador as quake death toll rises. Heavy rains and landslides hamper rescue efforts

Shelterbox News - Sun, 2016-04-17 23:00

The Ecuador government has now officially called for international aid following the country’s worst earthquake for 37 years, and Cornwall-based ShelterBox is sending in a team to work in partnership with other shelter providers. But many of the worst-affected rural communities are hard to reach, and aftershocks and landslides are a constant fear.

Categories: Charity News

‘This wasn't just a house that collapsed, it was an entire town.’ Ecuador is the latest country to suffer a major earthquake. UK agency ShelterBox has aid stored nearby in Colombia and Panama

Shelterbox News - Sat, 2016-04-16 23:00

The latest in a spate of major earthquakes worldwide struck the South American country of Ecuador last night at midnight UK time, near the northern town of Muisne. A 7.8 magnitude quake at a shallow 12 miles, it has left at least 77 people dead

Categories: Charity News

Second Japan quake in two days. UK ShelterBox teams on tsunami alert as the Pacific is rocked by frequent seismic events.

Shelterbox News - Fri, 2016-04-15 23:00

Response teams in Fiji have been put on tsunami alert as Japan was struck by a second major earthquake yesterday at 15.25 UK time. The death toll from both quakes has now risen to at least eighteen, and troops are searching for people feared trapped in the rubble of collapsed buildings

Categories: Charity News

ShelterBox standing by if needed to respond to Japan earthquake

Shelterbox News - Thu, 2016-04-14 23:00

UK disaster relief agency ShelterBox is on alert following a deadly earthquake that struck southern Japan last evening. At least nine people have died and more than 250 are injured after the quake and aftershocks toppled buildings and cut power supplies

Categories: Charity News

Wanda and Jamie beat their fundraising target on 24 hour run around Loe Bar for ShelterBox

Shelterbox News - Mon, 2016-04-11 23:00

It’s a route that most people would use for a leisurely stroll – around Loe Bar, across the National Trust Penrose estate, and into Porthleven. But for ShelterBox fundraisers Wanda Summers and Jamie Giddens it was a test of endurance over 24 hours ‘behind bars’

Categories: Charity News

Mountain adventurer Brian Jackson conquering unclimbed Himalayan peaks for ShelterBox, starting in valleys said to be the home of the Yeti

Shelterbox News - Thu, 2016-04-07 23:00

Facing the unknown, and possibly facing a Yeti! Experienced mountaineer Brian Jackson and a colleague will be tackling the ‘dangerous peak’ Omi Tso Go on the Nepal / Tibet border, raising funds for ShelterBox. The unknown factor? No-one has ever climbed it before!

Categories: Charity News

ShelterBox aid workers take cover as second cyclone in six weeks brings more misery to Fiji

Shelterbox News - Tue, 2016-04-05 23:00

ShelterBox aid workers take cover as second cyclone in six weeks brings more misery to Fiji

Categories: Charity News

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