14 Jan

Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind is excited to celebrate its’ thirty-fifth anniversary

OTTAWAJan. 14, 2019 /CNW/ – Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind is excited to celebrate its’ thirty-fifth anniversary.  Incorporated on January 12, 1984, the organization was founded by two individuals from England who came to Canada with the intention of starting a guide dog training organization, something that was lacking at the time. 

Prior to 1984, many Canadians had to travel to the U.S.A. to receive guide dogs.  However, with the opening of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind in 1984, staying at home in Canada to train with and receive a guide dog became a reality.

Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind is a national charitable organization.  The National Training Centre is located in Manotick, a small community in the south end of Ottawa, Ontario.  It’s from there the services provided extend into every province of the country.

Kristen Spring of Kingston, Ontario has trained with and received five guide dogs from Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind.  Spring says, “Having a guide dog means the freedom to go anywhere I want, the freedom to do pretty much anything I want.  When you are going up steps, the dog judges how high the step is by going up onto that step.  I never have to worry that I am going to walk into something and not be able to figure out how to go the rest of the way.  I just have to ask the dog to find the way.  I can’t say enough about how good the training is, not just for the dog but for the people.

Co-Founder Jane Thornton remains with the organization today as its’ Chief Operating Officer.  Thornton says, “Because of everyone involved, from our clients, board member, donors, volunteers and staff, we are thriving. From the first guide dog team, John and Sasha, to the latest guide dog team, from the west coast to the east, from the money donated by a child who has saved their allowance, to the largest sponsorships, everyone should rejoice at the incredible teamwork put forth to create and sustain our organization.”

Serving Canadians since 1984, Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind is open to applications from Canadians who would benefit who are registered as legally blind and benefit from enhanced mobility and independence through the use of a guide dog. 

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