Origins of the Pawsitively Strong Fund
On Wednesday, May 8, 2013, NEADS announced that survivors of the Boston Marathon bombing who have sustained a permanent physical disability were to be offered Service Dogs through the creation of a new fund.
"For many years now, our office has partnered with NEADS by hosting young Service Dogs in training. We are grateful to those donors who have agreed to fund Service Dogs for victims of the marathon bombings and look forward to working with NEADS to identify appropriate homes for these incredible animals." - Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley
NEADS worked in collaboration with the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Victim Assistance Program and the Massachusetts Office for Victim Assistance to distribute information and identify potential recipients of Service Dogs. Through this collaboration, the fund is now opened to include survivors of violent crime in Massachusetts who have sustained a permanent physical disability, as a result of that crime, who feel that they would benefit from a Service Dog and qualify for the NEADS program. Additionally, the fund is open to those who have applied and been accepted for an Assistance Dog. These individuals must work directly with eligible victims of violent crimes in Massachusetts.
"The value and impact that our Service Dogs and Assistance Dogs provide to those in need are immeasurable. We are happy to offer our help, and hope that through this fund, Marathon bombing survivors, victims of other violent crimes in Massachusetts, and a larger population through our Assistance Dog program can receive the independence, comfort, and companionship our dogs provide." - Gerry DeRoche, NEADS CEO