Les Belles Bouclettes (and From Goats To Soaps) would like to introduce you to the next charity we are featuring.
Gallant Hearts is a guide dog training facility in Mississippi. It is a younger organization, only incorporated in August, 2009 and received its tax exempt status in April, 2010. As you will see, being a relatively new foundation isn’t all that sets Gallant Hearts apart from the majority of guide dog training schools, there are a few more things that make it a little different from most of the larger, older and better known organizations. Becky Floyd was instrumental in founding Gallant Hearts and she continues to be a major force in the organization she devotes her time and energy to. She has kindly agreed to contribute a guest post in the next few days, which we are eagerly looking forward to. For the moment we would like to present an exceptional organization to our readers! (Note! In a new Initiative to help support the charities we feature Les Belles Bouclettes will be giving a coupon valid until January 15th 2016 to every person making a donation of $20 or more to Gallant Hearts. The coupon will be sent to you by Gallant Hearts upon their receipt of the donation.)
GALLANT HEARTS GUIDE DOG CENTER Madison, Mississippi, USA
Gallant Hearts Guide Dog Center is a nonprofit charity based in Madison, MS. The mission of Gallant Hearts is to provide well trained, healthy guide dogs, free of charge, to qualified people who are blind. The independence that people gain from these dogs improves self confidence, productivity, social interaction, and enhances safety.
A dog, from birth through placement with a person who is blind, costs approximately twenty thousand dollars at Gallant Hearts. Gallant Hearts receives funding through individual and corporate donations, fund raising events, and charity bingo in Mississippi.
Gallant Hearts has a breeding program for German Shepherd Dogs, Doberman Pinschers, and English Cream Golden Retrievers. From the breeding program, our puppies go to puppy raisers throughout the United States and Canada. However, it is more economically advantageous to have puppy raisers within driving distance of Gallant Hearts. The puppy learns good house manners, obedience, and to adjust to various environments and people during the time it is with the puppy raiser.
When the puppy is eighteen months old, it will return to Gallant Hearts to complete its health testing and begin its guide dog harness training. After a minimum of one hundred hours of in harness training, the dog is ready to place with a person who is blind. The trainer takes the trained dog to the home of the recipient of the dog and will remain in the area for a week to ten days to train the person who is blind and their new dog. During this time the trainer, recipient and dog work up to six hours per day together. This enables the recipient and dog to bond as well as familiarizing the dog with its new working environment.
Gallant Hearts is continuing to grow although the school will never train over fifty dogs a year. Right now, the school places eight to twelve dogs a year. As funding permits, we will employ another trainer and apprentice trainer so that we can place more dogs each year.
Learn more about Gallant Hearts by going to our website at gallanthearts.org, and see us on Facebook. Donations are always needed and appreciated and we love keeping you informed as to the programs and events in which Gallant Hearts is involved.