My name is Eric Shairs and I’m working with NEADS to be paired with a Service Dog. Due to a diving accident August 5th, 2005 my condition is medically classified C6 incomplete spinal cord injury, socially titled quadriplegic. Recovery has/will continue to be a long road physically and mentally. Every day since my catastrophic injury I have and continue to rely on my manual wheelchair for daily mobility. My paralysis also affects my upper-body abilities due to no voluntary control of my trunk muscles (abdominals, obliques, mid-lower back) and hands/fingers. This compromises my ability to lean to the side, reach the ground or grab items. Picking up dropped items, reaching door handles, retrieving objects on the counter, operating light switches and pushing automatic door buttons are some of the daily activities a service dog will be able to help with.
Trained dogs are matched for personality, lifestyle and assistive needs. The cost to raise and train a NEADS Service Dog is over $42,000. I am being asked to fundraise a minimum of $8,000 to offset that cost. All donations made will be applied to this cost. I can proudly report NEADS has earned a four-star rating by Charity Navigator for the last 14 years. Nearly 88 cents for every dollar donated to NEADS goes directly into programs sponsoring a service dog for a child or adult.
NEADS is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization established in 1976, based in Princeton, Massachusetts. NEADS Tax ID # is 23-7281887, this means your donation qualifies as a tax write-off. Service Dogs become an extension of their handlers and bring freedom, physical autonomy and relief from social isolation to their human partners who are disabled. NEADS Service Dogs can spend up to two years in training to learn vital skills to help their future mate. You can learn much more visiting neads.org or their Facebook page.
Thank you for your time and interest…it is appreciated!