After serving our country, it’s not uncommon for people to go home with some kind of disability, whether it be physical or psychological.
That’s why Veterans Moving Forward, a nonprofit organization in Virginia, is so important. Their mission is to help these heroes by providing them with support in the form of adorable service dogs!
VMF often trains these pups from the time they’re 8 weeks old to the time they’re 2 years old before pairing them with a veteran at no cost. They put plenty of thought into each partnership, determining the best fit based on the dog’s personality and ability.
According to VMF, more than 280,000 veterans suffered some kind of traumatic brain injury between 2008 and 2018. While service members have a higher risk of developing PTSD and other mental health struggles in general, those with brain injuries have an even greater risk.
Service dogs can provide immense comfort to people experiencing symptoms of depression, anxiety, PTSD, and other mental health disorders. So VMF makes sure their dogs can help their humans in a variety of ways, including interrupting PTSD flashbacks and nightmare episodes.
Individuals with physical disabilities can also benefit from service dogs! Their pups are trained to open doors, bring them medication and water, and even find help during medical emergencies.
These dogs can be life-changing for veterans, but unfortunately, they’re usually hard to come by.
Thankfully, VMF is out there, working hard to help as many people as they can! Not only do they provide service dogs for free, but they also connect veterans with local veterinarians to provide the pups with monthly checkups and refresher trainings to keep their skills sharp.
The nonprofit is such a crucial resource for this incredible community, but their operation depends on volunteers and donations. Sadly, because of novel coronavirus restrictions, they’ve had to cancel dozens of fundraising events.
While their loyal staff members are still training and pairing pups, the future of VMF depends on support from kindhearted people around the world.
You can also help spread the word about the wonderful organization by sharing this story with your friends.
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