A Friend for a Special Child

There are special children and special situations, when children’s health and well-being can be improved with the help of animals like dolphins and horses. In addition to the dolphin therapy and equine-assisted therapy, there are more and more cases when canistherapy comes to aid, where a specially selected and trained dog performs the duties of a therapist.

Five children and their families participate in the long-term charity program “A Friend for a Special Child”. Its goal is to provide assistance dogs to four children with special needs and a guide dog to one visually impaired boy.

Unlike other international programmes, the prospective four-legged assistants are living together with their new hosts from puppyhood. Each puppy is selected by experts based on character traits that will work best with the needs of each specific child. Skilled professionals have been helping us with the implementation of the program for more than a year and a half. Cynologists and dog-assisted therapy specialists work individually with each child, their families, and prospective assistants.

It is a great pleasure to see the results achieved by the project during the year. All our project participants experience significant and highly positive changes in their everyday life. Assistance dogs for Katrīna in Riga, Roberts in Valmiera, Elīna in Liepupe and Kirils in Liepāja have already become a major incentive to be more active in their daily lives, boosting their self-confidence and increasing their involvement in various day-to-day activities. Whereas Ori, a canine companion for a fragile little boy Everts, who explores the world mostly through the senses of touch and hearing, has become the boy’s major link with the world.

The charity program “A Friend for a Special Child” and its five participants are fully supported by BeOpen charity foundation. We are pleased that so many compassionate people have joined our initiative, and together we can help these special children and their stout-hearted parents.

Everyone is invited to join this charitable project, helping children with special needs make friends and providing a long-term professional assistance dog training program.

It is also possible to help via one's payment card or one can make a donation using the following requisites:

BeOpen Charitable Foundation

Reg. No. 50008218201

Account No. LV59 CBBR 1123 2155 0001 0

Aim of a donation - A friend for a special child

Canistherapy, or canine-assisted therapy, is a means of medical rehabilitation that can help a child overcome social exclusion, boost self-esteem, lessen a variety of neuroses, improve hand-eye coordination and overall psychological resilience. Pet therapy is a relatively new field in Latvia that has given good results in other countries.