POET Jeremy Younger, of H MAS Success, is hoping the newest addition to his household will make a difference for his young family.
PO Younger and his wife, Leigh, have four children, all of whom have been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder.
While dealing with the daily challenges of autism, combined with consistent periods of time away from his family, PO Younger learnt that the Dogs for Kids with Disabilities (DKD) organisation might be able to assist his family.
DKD is a not-for-profit organisation based in Victoria, specialising in assistance dogs for children with autism and other developmental disorders.
It takes 18 months to raise and train an assistance dog before it is ready to be matched with its child, or children. It costs $25,000 to train each dog.
As DKD docs not receive any government funding, the families rely on fundraising and the generosity of others to help cover the costs.
The financial hurdle, along with a waiting list (and not all children arc eligible for this program), makes applying for the program a big decision for any family.
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