A team of speech and language therapists from Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust (WWL) had a special visit to one of their clinics, thanks to their kind donations.
In lieu of buying Christmas cards last year, the 30-strong community team decided that it would be an idea to sponsor a puppy from the Dogs for Good charity.
As their work helps children and their families where there are speech, language or communication difficulties, and the Dogs for Good dogs are trained to support children with disabilities and autism, they found their perfect match.
And, as a result, Doris the Labrador, became their sponsored puppy for 2019.
Dogs for Good Chief Executive, Peter Gorbing, said; “Dogs for Good relies entirely upon donations, fundraising and volunteers to continue its pioneering work and thus, donations like this, through our ‘Sponsor a Puppy’ scheme, really do mean a huge amount. We’re very grateful for the kindness and generosity of all concerned.”
Lynn John, Children’s Speech and Language Therapy Team Leader, said; “We work with children and young people, their families and the wider workforce in clinics, schools and nurseries, StartWell centres and the children’s homes.
“We thought that having a team pet would be good for our wellbeing, but, obviously this had to be a virtual pet.”
“As a result we sponsored Doris and each team meeting we have updates about her training and how she is doing.”
Halfway through the sponsorship, though Doris was unavailable, the team was visited by her friend, Parker, an 18-month-old Labrador, and his puppy trainer.
Lynn said; “It was lovely for the team meeting to have a visitor. We all really enjoyed hearing about the work that Dogs for Good do and the enormously positive impact that dogs can have, providing practical help, boosting confidence, enabling independence and wider social opportunities for people who may otherwise be isolated.
“Best of all we got to meet Parker, one of the most well-behaved and handsome dogs most of us had ever met!”
Lynn added; “We would definitely recommend having a team pet to other teams- it doesn’t have to be a dog. We did consider a snow leopard, although we couldn’t have had a visit from one of those!”