Sponsor a Client

My name is Joanne Beaudry, a Speech/Language Pathologist at Wachusett Regional High School in Holden, MA. I am working with classrooms of students on the Autism Spectrum; most have been diagnosed with Asperger's or PDD-NOS . Many of the students have co-morbid diagnosis' of severe anxiety, severe depression, ADHD, and communication disorders. With these secondary diagnosis, their behaviors make it extremely difficult to express their feelings as well as communicate and socialize with peers, and adults in their environment.

Suzanne is a mother, writer, youth coach, and Protestant ordained minister. Suzanne is interested in the myriad ways ministry happens outside church walls, and is eager to embark on a new partnership of pastoral care with a NEADS Service Dog for Therapy.

Thank you for giving me this opportunity to introduce myself. My name is George Breault and I’ve struggled every day with Multiple sclerosis for the past 24 years and have been confined to a wheelchair 21 of those years. I am determined to stay independent as long as possible. However, with the disease progressing that is getting to be more and more challenging every day. Therefore, the time has come for me to consider having a service dog to assist me with daily functions that sometimes seem impossible. I believe a service dog will provide me with the confidence necessary to maintain an independent life style.

My 7 year old daughter Rayanie recently recieved Chief, an assistance dog from NEADS. Rayanie has Williams syndrome -- a genetic condition that is present at birth and characterized by medical problems including cardiovascular disease, developmental delays, and learning disabilities.

I have had moderate to severe hearing loss since birth. I have always strived to be independent and not have my hearing loss be the driving force of my life. I am a School Psychologist, so my professional life is dedicated to advocating for children with special needs and supporting their families and teachers.

Rev. Debbie Clark is pastor of Edwards United Church of Christ in Framingham, Massachusetts.  The congregation has welcomed Jeannie, a beautiful standard poodle, as a "service dog for ministry."  Jeannie provides a warm, gentle, caring presence for the congregation and the wider community.

When I first applied to get an assistance dog from NEADS, I knew that I would receive a special dog. I didn't know that I would receive a dog that has had such a huge impact on my professional and personal life. Rev accompanies me to work everyday, which is the Nevins Nursing and Rehab Centre in Methuen Massachusetts.

Michelle was born profoundly deaf and has identified herself as being culturally Deaf. She attended Gallaudet University and received her doctorate degree (Ph.D.) in Clinical Psychology.  When not working, Michelle is active and enjoys the outdoors of New England. She can often be found hiking, running and camping during her down time.

Gradually becoming deafer, Cynthia needs a hearing dog to alert her to everyday sounds such as alarms and phone calls. Without her hearing aids, she can barely hear anything.

Several years ago, I walked into a room at the Tippet Home in Needham, MA to visit a member of the church I was serving. She was there for hospice care. As soon as I entered the room, she gave me a distressed look and asked, “Where’s your dog?” She had met me and my senior lab, Copper, earlier during her illness. I told her, “I didn’t even think to bring him.” I checked with the Tippett Home and asked if I could bring Copper for the next visit and they said, “Of course!” I brought Copper and as soon as she saw Copper, there was a look of peace, contentment, and even joy on the dying woman’s face. She was ready to talk.

I was an active person for my whole life. I played hockey since I was five years old and never miss watching a Bruins game. When I was 25 years old I was playing hockey and noticed my eyesight would get extremely blurry while playing, then I noticed after my honeymoon to Ireland that my feet became numb. After a year of going to the doctor, I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. I was a newly married 26 year old. I had no idea how this diagnosis would change my life.

Born deaf, Kathleen would like a hearing dog to alert her to sounds she would otherwise not hear.

I began working with NEADS in 2005 and received my first Service Dog in 2006. I discovered more independence that I never knew was possible with my Spastic Quadriplegic Cerebral palsy. Things that I benefited from were: picking up dropped items, accessing the fridge, light switches, and opening doors just to name a few.

Elijah is 14 years old and in the 8th grade at King Philip Middle School in Norfolk, MA. He has many strengths such as a great sense of humor but is socially withdrawn. A social dog would give him confidence to meet new challenges in his daily life

My name is Joe Hurley. In May of 2012 I was diagnosed with Guillain-Barre syndrome, a disorder in which the body's immune system attacks the nerves. Before that, I was actively competing in Mixed Martial Arts and held a full time job.

Sue is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and works in a state psychiatric hospital and recovery center. She has been working as part of Deaf Services for over 20 years and has been in the field of mental health for 30 years. As part of the NEADS puppy raising program Sue has brought these NEADS pups into the hospital for over two years and has seen firsthand how the pups relate to, bond with and bridge the gap between therapist and client. Therapeutic dogs affect these clients by providing that unconditional love and trust that is so hard to build with clients who may suffer from severe trauma and symptoms of mental illness. Bringing a therapeutic dog with her to work daily would greatly impact patient care in a positive way. Many of the clients Sue works with are Deaf and language is never a barrier when interacting with the dogs. Trust if often one of the key issues of these clients ability to recover and move on to a more independent and healthy style of life, the dog will greatly assist in this process.

Hi Everyone, My name is Rylie and I have been matched to become a therapy dog at Boston Medical Center (BMC). I’ve been waiting my whole life for this. In this role, I will visit patients, families and staff at the hospital and bring with me compassion, caring and a pleasant diversion from hospital life.

Eric's hearing loss, a result of brain damage at birth, was only detected about 7 years ago and is getting worse. His hearing dog Princess helps him to be more independent in his daily activities and alerts him to sounds that he is unable to hear.

I am excited to be joining the NEADS family and developing a partnership with Bella. Bella will serve as both a ministry dog and a service dog assisting me personally. As a minister and an animal-lover, I cannot think of a more ideal way to “do” ministry. Bella and I will serve our congregation, community, and region in many ways: through congregational and interfaith worship and events; pastoral care visits to nursing homes and hospitals; and crisis response to recovery and reunification centers in Petersham and the wider region. We will respond to requests by local clergy of any faith as well as regional fire, police, and other emergency responders.

My name is Karen Landy and I am a rabbi at NewBridge on the Charles – a continuum of care community in Dedham, MA. We are a multigenerational campus with a k-8 Hebrew Day School – the Rashi school. I am so lucky to have found a wonderful chaplaincy dog to partner with me in my work of healing, teaching, and gemilut Hasidim – loving kindness. Tamari, my one year old, Labrador retriever, has touched my residents in ways that compliment and surpass my work. She brings smiles to everyone – residents and staff. She patiently gives visits and love. She participates in therapy and is able to fetch the ball for hours. She is the epitome of unconditional love and everyone had labeled her their dog. We are truly blessed to have her.

I began my partnership with Daisy, a young Golden Retriever "Service Dog for Ministry" in October. She has become a favorite in the various ministry settings in which I am involved. In churches, she opens up conversations with people who might be reluctant otherwise. She is particularly good with kids, even the most hesitant.

I am a counselor at the Cushing House which is a part of the Gavin Foundation and located in South Boston. The Cushing House is a 6-month program for girls ages 16-20 in early recovery from addiction. Working with me from 3-11 pm, Rowan brightens everyone's day- from greeting girls at the door when they come back from school/work to giving them a kiss before they go to sleep.

I’ve been a paraplegic for 28 years and due to arthritic changes in my cervical spine, I’ve lost strength and dexterity in my hands. I continue to work for the Center for Living and Working, Inc. where I work to help other people with disabilities gain and maintain their independence. My daughter is now 20 years old and serving our country as a United States Marine.

I am a 75-year-old woman who was recently partnered with Della, my second Hearing Assistant Dog. Monte had passed over the Rainbow Bridge a year ago last March., and I was lost without him. I did not think I could ever find another dog as well trained as he, but Della is already getting me to respond to even more sounds than he did.

Brandon has difficulty in making friends because his speech is sometimes hard to understand and people do not always understand how to communicate with people with Down Syndrome. 

My name is Nicholas and I am a quadriplegic. In April, 2012 I was involved in a dirt biking accident that would change my life drastically. Since I was about 13 years old, my passion has always been riding dirt bikes with my friends. I was a healthy young man graduating from high school in June of 2012. I had a contract to go into the Navy August, 2012. My dream was to be a Navy SEAL for which I was training hard with a group of young men in the hopes of being accepted to the SEALS once boot camp was finished. My plans changed. I had a tragic accident on April 7th, 2012 which left me as a C-5 quadriplegic.

I have recently been matched with Murray. He has been such an amazing gift. I was diagnosed with MS in 2010 after 20 years of symptoms. I have weakness on both sides, more on the left and my balance is starting to become a problem.  I drop things frequently and have difficulty picking things up from the floor.

Kaiyla is a vibrant, energetic, happy 10 year old girl, diagnosed with Autism and Intellectual Disability. The obstacles she faces because of this can be challenging, emotional, frustrating and cause everyday tasks to be difficult. Every day she follows a schedule using visual boards and cues, yet still requires assistance with tasks many of us take for granted. Personal hygiene, getting dressed, toileting, transitioning from one task or place to another, these are all extremely hard for Kaiyla, who strives for independence but gets frustrated and anxious when she needs help.

Taylor is our bright 8-year-old daughter. When she was 18 months old she was diagnosed with autism. We began Early Intervention and had ABA therapists in our home for countless hours. Taylor has always loved dogs, horses, dinosaurs and dragons. As Taylor got older her presentation of autism improved and her current diagnosis is Aspergers. Over the last couple of years, we have noticed high levels of anxiety and depression. We brought her in for help where she was then diagnosed with both of these as well as a mood disorder.

Marina needs a puppy to turn itself upside down to help her! Marina had an accident while riding her horse and now needs a dog to help.

Katya is a petite college student. She was born with spina bifida, has had several surgeries including spinal fusion, and walks with crutches. Her goal is to be able to live independently and make a contribution to the world.

Scooter helps engage my many clients who suffer from severe and persistent mental illness. My role as Residential Registered Nurse allows me to visit with these individuals, provide physical assessments and advocate for the services they may need. Scooter provides them with tactile stimulation and unconditional love they deserve. Scooter also encourages these individuals to increase their activity level through hikes and trips to the local dog park. In addition I will am able to share this amazing animal with my family. My clients are truly excited about Scooter being an addition to our clinical team. Thank you in advance for considering a donation.

I was recently matched with Cami, my new service dog and she is so helpful! I look forward to building a relationship. I think one of the most rewarding things is the companionship a person develops with their dog. There really are no words to explain the understanding you have because you know your dog and the dog knows you.

Hi my name is Nicole Toscano and I am a student at Providence College. I'm double majoring in Social Work and Health Policy and Management. I have a rare, genetic connective tissue disorder known as Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome which makes my joints extremely loose causing them to partially and fully dislocate frequently.

Catherine Vrtis is a 5th year Ph.D. candidate at Tufts University. She also has Ehlers-Danlos, a rare, degenerative genetic disorder primarily effective the musculo-skeletal system, and as a result usually has to use a wheelchair for locomotion.