Southeastern Guide Dogs recently received an Impact Polk grant for $5,000 from the George W. Jenkins Fund within GiveWell Community Foundation to assist guide dog and service dog graduates in Polk County. These funds will be used for the Alumni Support Program.
Last year, Southeastern Guide Dogs launched the Alumni Support Program thanks to the support of generous partners and donors. This program offers dog food, flea and tick preventatives, and regular veterinary visits and vaccinations for the lifetime of each working dog team. The program is the most comprehensive alumni support program of any service dog school in North America.
Guide dog graduate Rachel Weeks has first-hand experience caring for her guide dog, Plum, and a personal understanding of the value and impact of this set of benefits. Weeks shared, “this is an amazing gift. I know what it is like to walk into the vet office hoping the bill will not derail my budget. It is important to put food on the table for a family and also imperative for Plum and other dogs like her to receive top-of-the-line care. Graduates can now go forward confidently to the highest level of independence and freedom.”
Southeastern Guide Dogs creates extraordinary partnerships between people and dogs. The organization breeds, raises and trains elite working dogs to meet the needs of people with vision loss and veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other disabilities. All services at Southeastern Guide Dogs are provided at no cost to recipients thanks to private donations and grants like this one from the George W. Jenkins Fund within GiveWell Community Foundation.
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About Southeastern Guide Dogs
Southeastern Guide Dogs transforms lives by creating and nurturing extraordinary partnerships between people and dogs. Our organization operates the most advanced training facilities of any service dog organization in the world. Our experts breed, raise, and train elite working dogs—including guide dogs, service dogs, and skilled companion dogs—and provide life-changing services for people with vision loss, veterans with disabilities, and children with significant challenges such as vision loss or the loss of a parent in the military. Pursuing our mission since 1982, Southeastern Guide Dogs now has over 1,200 dogs under our auspices.
All of our services—which include state-of-the-art research on canine health and development; selective breeding; expert dog training; comprehensive on-campus student instruction; and the most robust alumni support program in North America—are provided at no cost to recipients. We rely 100% on private donations. Southeastern Guide Dogs has the distinction of being dually accredited by the two premier, global accreditation bodies: the International Guide Dog Federation and Assistance Dogs International. Learn more at www.GuideDogs.org.
About GiveWell Community Foundation
The mission of the GiveWell Community Foundation (GWCF) is to champion charitable giving to improve the quality of life in the areas we serve, both now and for future generations. We accomplish this by working with individuals, families, businesses, and nonprofits to build stronger communities in Polk, Hardee, and Highlands counties through charitable funds and competitive grant cycles. Since its founding in 1997, the community foundation has awarded more than $230 million in grants. Today, GWCF is home to more than 300 charitable funds and the Impact Polk and Empower Polk grant cycles. To learn more about GWCF, visit givecf.org or call 863-683-3131.