Hyundai Help for Kids
Hyundai Help for Kids recently ‘hit the road’ with the team from Assistance Dogs Australia to see firsthand the incredible impact their support has had and continues to provide through the Animal Assisted Therapy program.
Animal Assisted Therapy uses Assistance Dogs in training to engage with young people in the community that are having trouble accessing traditional forms of therapy.
“Parents have come to us because they have tried human based therapies and they see that their child or teenager is not willing to even enter the therapy room or that once they’re there, they shut down because of anxiety or because of other emotional issues,” said Claire Dickson, Occupational Therapist at Assistance Dogs Australia.
“When they come to us there’s the excitement of getting to see the dog, be around the dog and build a relationship with a specific dog that they‘re going to see through the course of their therapy.”
The program, based at Engadine NSW, currently delivers both clinic based sessions and group sessions at local primary and high schools.
CEO of Assistance Dogs Australia, Richard Lord, says that thanks to the support of Hyundai Helps for Kids, the program is having a hugely positive impact on children and their families:
“With the incredibly generous contribution from Hyundai Help for Kids, children and families with autism have been given the opportunity to access our Animal Assisted Therapy program. Having witnessed several of these sessions myself, I’ve been fortunate enough to see the significant impact this work has on the health and wellbeing of all participants.”