Golden PAWS Assistance Dogs celebrates with SANTA PAWS event

Golden PAWS Assistance Dogs held their Santa PAWS event to celebrate the holidays and their new four-pawed cadets on November 16 at The Ken & Susan Meyer Center for Golden PAWS Assistance Dogs off Pine Ridge Road in Naples.
Santa PAWS is an annual signature fundraising event for the nonprofit organization that promotes independence for combat wounded veterans, first responders and children with life-changing disabilities through partnerships with skilled assistance dogs. However, the event has not been held since 2019 due to the pandemic and safety precautions. With over 150 guests and several Golden PAWS recipients alongside their Golden PAWS Service Dogs, this year’s event turned out to be well-attended and well supported and, was the first Santa PAWS event to be held in the new facility.
“The guests that filled the room are a part of our Golden PAWS Family,” said Jeannie C. Bates, Founder and CEO of Golden PAWS Assistance Dogs. “They shared this special evening with us, celebrating all we have accomplished this past year and all we plan to accomplish in 2023.”
Everyone in attendance enjoyed good food, good conversation, and a spirited Fund-A-Need led by Board Chair Kyle Reed. The evening ended with a Golden PAWS inspired celebration of “puparazzi” photo ops. Over 30 volunteers were paired with new puppy cadets and assistance dogs in-training as the furry puppies were paraded around the room for everyone to adore.
“The volunteers really shined at Santa PAWS — greeting the guests with a warm Golden PAWS welcome and showing off all that our cadets have learned this past year. Without this amazing group of hardworking individuals, we would not be where we are today,” added Ms. Bates.
During the two plus year assistance dog training program, each dog participates in a highly respected Canine Assisted Therapy program, the only program of its kind in SW Florida.
Besides training assistance dogs, Golden PAWS also has several community programs and places a strong emphasis on giving back. The list of community partners continues to grow and includes NCH Healthcare System, Vi at Bentley Village, Youth Haven, David Lawrence Center’s Crisis Care Unit, New Beginnings School of Naples, Collier County Libraries and Schools, and The Marbella at Pelican Bay. A team of volunteers along with assistance dogs in training visit these community partners on a regular basis.
Golden PAWS Assistance Dogs is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that promotes independence for combat wounded veterans and children with life-changing disabilities through partnerships with skilled assistance dogs.
The Ken & Susan Meyer Center for Golden PAWS Assistance Dogs houses and trains up to 40 dogs at a time plus up to 10 puppies and is located alongside Pine Ridge Road in North Naples at 3645 Gateway Lane. To learn how you can support Golden PAWS Assistance Dogs’ mission or for more information about the organization, please visit www.GoldenPaws.org or call 239-775-1660.

https://www.aboveboardchamber.com
This article was submitted by a Guest Author of the Above Board Chamber.