XENIA, Ohio — 4 Paws for Ability is proud to announce the partnership with Pay It Forward (PIF) Apparel, LLC, in an effort to Pay it Forward.
The promotion will last year round, starting in March, then again in May, September and November.
“We are thrilled to partner with PIF! At 4 Paws for Ability, we strive to ‘pay it forward’ every day in the work that we do,” said Karen Shirk, 4 Paws for Ability founder and executive director.
PIF T-shirts cost $23 each and 4 Paws for Ability will receive 25 percent of each shirt sold. That means 4 Paws for Ability will obtain nearly $6 per shirt to benefit more children with disabilities. That is after all, what 4 Paws for Ability is all about! In fact, over the past 15 years, 4 Paws for Ability has placed approximately 700 service dogs with children with disabilities.
“Our goal has always been to enrich the lives of children with disabilities by the training and placement of quality, task trained service dogs to provide increased independence for the children and assistance to their families. And we think cause-marketing with PIF will prove to work hand-in-hand with our everyday intentions as a team,” continued Shirk.
Today, placing approximately 100 dogs a year, 4 Paws For Ability is the largest organization whose primary mission is to place service dogs with children and one of the only organizations to have no minimum age requirements. We place almost every type of service dog available and never turn down a child who does not “fit” into one of the traditional service dog categories. Our Multipurpose Assistance Dog is a dog that encompasses all those children who do not fit into the traditional service dog types and/or who have disabilities that fit into more than one type of dog trained.
Many of the families who come to 4 Paws do so asking if we can help their child who may have a disability not addressed by any of the service dog agencies they have located.
While some children, for example children who have only the diagnosis of Autism, fit clearly into a specific type of service dog, (The Autism Assistance Dog), many of our families have children with multiple issues, or diagnoses that do not seem to be addressed directly in the typical service dog categories, for example Down’s Syndrome, Fragile X, Apraxia, ADHD, a variety of mental health diagnosis, life threatening medical illnesses such as cancer, and medically frail children…to name a very few.
For additional information or for interview opportunities, contact Jessica Noll-Korczyk at 937.768.9096 or email to Jessica4Paws@aol.com.
4 Paws for Ability is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to place quality service dogs with children with disabilities and veterans who have lost use of limbs or hearing; help with animal rescue, and educate the public regarding use of service dogs in public places. 4 Paws for Ability relies on the generosity of individuals, as well as corporations, and accepts donations for operating expenses, training, food, toys, training supplies, medication, and our building fund.
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-By Jessica Noll-Korczyk
MONTVILLE, N.J. – Her generosity all started with a text that Sophie Guss received at school one day from her mom who was watching The Today Show. She said that her mom knew it was something that would intrigue her.
The Today Show was featuring 4 Paws for Ability. And it was perfect timing for the artistic 16-year-old sophomore at Montville Township High School in Montville, NJ.
“I had been trying to find an organization to get involved in and as soon as I heard about 4 Paws, I knew I wanted to help,” said the creative, self-proclaimed animal lover, whose family has always had rescue dogs as pets. Kenzie, a hound mix, is the Guss family’s current and third rescue dog.
“I feel good about helping these dogs who might not otherwise have homes. They give people unconditional love. There’s nothing like walking in my house knowing my dog will be so excited to see me!”
Guss said that she also loves children—which goes hand-in-paw with the mission of 4 Paws for Ability. In fact, she volunteers in an afterschool program in a nearby town with young children.
Helping children and helping dogs is the two-fold combination that made this venture kismet, as Guss visited 4PawsForAbility.org. After a few quick clicks of her mouse, she knew that this was something worthy of her time and talent.
“When I read the children’s stories, it made me want to help out,” said Guss. “I decided to do this because I love children and animals and I was looking to help an organization that could combine these two interests. When I heard about 4 Paws, it was perfect.”
She designed and sold tribute cards for $5 each.
“I emailed friends and family and told them about 4 Paws for Ability. It was nice when several people forwarded my email to their friends because they wanted to support me and your organization.”
She sold packs of four cards at $20 and raised $400 for 4 Paws for Ability.
4 Paws for Ability isn’t the first organization that Guss has donated her time or efforts. She cut her hair for Locks of Love twice and when she was 13, she raised about $1,000 for St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital.
Earlier this year, she participated in a walk-a-thon for the rescue organization that saved her dog Kenzie, and raised $375.
While the do-gooder teenager hasn’t yet visited Xenia to see the dogs and children whom she is helping with her efforts, she hopes to plan a trip to 4 Paws for Ability soon.
“Hopefully in the future, I can come. I will be looking at colleges next year, so maybe if I am nearby, I can visit,” said Guss.
-By Jessica Noll-Korczyk
Instead of teaching your child to be great ‘despite’ autism, teach them to be great ‘with’ autism. Perspective is everything.