Supporting Paws autism companion dog for Mikey

We are raising funds to enable the assistance dog organisation ‘Supporting Paws’ to provide and train an autism companion dog for our twelve year old son Mikey.

Mikey has autism, ADHD, hypermobility and dyspraxia.  This means that he has to work extra hard to accomplish things that come easily to most people.    

Why an autism companion dog?

When Mikey was small, he loved running around outside (a little too much!).  Those of you who knew him then will probably remember me constantly chasing after him – he was a runner!  These days Mikey finds it difficult to go out of the house and is less interested in being active or outdoors.  Having dyspraxia and hypermobility means he gets tired quickly and his autism means that he prefers to stay in familiar surroundings.  Mikey has two brothers close in age and, as they all grow up, it can at times feel heart-breaking that his brothers are spreading their wings and enjoying active social lives and sports while Mikey’s life is starting to become more limited.

Going to school can be also exhausting for him as he has to work so hard at focussing and organising his thoughts and feelings.  When he comes home, it would be wonderful for him to have a doggy friend to greet him, help him calm down if he is stressed and motivate him to spend time outdoors.  Now that Mikey is 12, he is old enough to train to be the dog’s handler which will be a massive confidence boost for him.   

What difference will your support make?

Supporting Paws create individual programmes for each young person with autism so that their dog can be specially trained to meet their unique needs.  A dog will help Mikey develop muscle tone and co-ordination, cope with unfamiliar situations or surroundings, increase his self esteem and most importantly be someone to love!   Any amount you can contribute will be most gratefully received.

7.5% of all donations to Tree of Hope in relation to this appeal will be allocated to the general charitable purposes of Tree of Hope to cover our core operating costs.
If we raise insufficient funds, or surplus funds, then the funds will be used, if appropriate, to fund support for our child’s needs in accordance with Tree of Hope’s charitable objects.  If in those circumstances we are unable to use all or part of the funds for the benefit of our child in accordance with Tree of Hope’s charitable objectives, then any funds that cannot be used will be transferred to be used for the general charitable purposes of Tree of Hope.

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