From: Melrose, MA
Program: Assistance Dog
Minimum Goal: $8,000 | Amount Raised:$250
My name is Megan Lavin. I am a special education teacher in the Boston Public School system. I am in my 14th year teaching in the Emotional Impairment Strand at the Beethoven School. I have taught 1st grade, 5th grade and presently teach Kindergarten. The population of students I work with struggle with self-regulation. Many of my students also have experienced childhood trauma. We provide these students with a safe, structured, and therapeutic setting where they can learn to love school.
Last year, I was lucky enough to host a NEADS assistance dog, Cuba, and her handler in my classroom once a week. The impact that Cuba had on my students was incredible. Cuba had an immediate calming effect on all of the students. They loved to brush her, walk her in the hallway, and sit by her during lessons. The children loved to read books to her and also loved reading their own writing to her.
In my years working with these special children, it was particularly touching to see the students with the more complex trauma histories gravitating most to Cuba. The non-judgmental response from a dog impacted these kids in such an authentic way. I thought to myself, I need to have this therapeutic tool in my room every day! I was thrilled to be accepted into the NEADS program.
*NEADS clients pledge to raise a minimum of $8,000 for the organization, thus allowing us to fulfill our mission of placing Service Dogs with individuals who benefit from them the most. Each donation ensures that NEADS will continue to change lives with our World Class Service Dogs.
On our donation form, pick the name of the client you want to sponsor under the Program Menu and check whether or not we can share your contact information with the client. Client fundraising totals are manually updated weekly (not automatically) which allows 100% of each donation to be allocated towards each client’s fundraising goal.