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The Share-A-Pet mission is to train, certify and insure volunteer teams to bring happiness to and improve the lives of individuals confined to hospitals, nursing homes and children's centers by providing pet-assisted therapy.
Share-A-Pet is a 501c3 non profit organization, headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, FL, with branches operating also in Albany, NY, and San Francisco, CA. Share-A-Pet was founded in Dec. 2003 by a man and his yellow lab, with the simple, yet profound desire to serve those in need. The duo started attracting volunteers after a newspaper article was published on them in 2005. As of 2010, Share-A-Pet has signed on over 800 volunteers and their therapy dogs to the joys and wonder of pet-assisted therapy.
Share-A-Pet volunteers visit elementary schools and help struggling readers overcome their fear of reading to become better readers. Our volunteers also visit nursing homes and similar facilities and help the elderly feel loved and appreciated. We do our best to make the Share-A-Pet experience a win-win for everyone: the volunteers who so readily serve those less fortunate in our community; our dogs who are so incredibly loving that we can't help but share that love with those in need; and the individuals we serve, whose lives are forever impacted by the ability of our dogs to be unconditionally loving and accepting.
The need for this project comes from considering the lives of all those individuals who for various reasons have been placed in health institutions. Arranging pet visits brings a sense of home from outside the facility walls and a sense of comfort to each resident. Our pets are considered angels of love and healing by the residents, as well as the Activity Directors at these various centers. It is not uncommon to find that our visits are often the only highlight in the lives of these residents. Due to their isolation and the often monotonous regularity of their routines, the pet-assisted therapy visits offer a unique stimulation that does not exist otherwise in their lives. We have found that the excitement of our visits carry over past our actual visiting time
Teachers in elementary schools have welcomed the loving attention given by our therapy dogs to children who are struggling to read. Not only have these children become better readers, the experience of reading to our dogs, have given them a boost in self esteem. Teachers have remarked on the increased class participation of the children; an interest in checking books out of the class library and of course an increase in grades.
We are happy and honored to be able to give back to the community we live in. And we look forward to introducing you to the joys of pet-assisted therapy. Thank you for your time.