UDAR Gives Back: Help us fund UCSF Facility Dog Therapy Program
As we kick off the holiday season, we hope you will take a moment to help support the UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital San Francisco. This year, our goal for UDAR is to raise $2,500 to support the facility dog therapy program. No matter the size of your gift, every contribution is meaningful.
Part of Child Life Services, the facility dog therapy program has two dogs - Vente and Momo - who are available to visit with patients and their families. $2,500 will help fund 25 visits!
Both Vente and Momo are working professionals, purposefully bred and exhaustively trained as companion dogs. They, along with their handlers Eileen and Laura, specialize in providing cuddles, companionship, and the kind of care only a dog can provide.
Combining the expertise of a child life specialist with a highly trained facility dog creates magic for our young patients. “Kimono [Momo] can have a huge impact on a patient’s recovery,” says Eileen “She encourages difficult physical therapy, making it fun and providing a little extra comfort just when it’s needed most. For many of my patients, seeing Kimono is the bright spot in their day of treatment.”
The scientifically proven health benefits of animal-assisted therapy go well beyond the unconditional love received from a furry companion. Animal-assisted therapy can improve blood pressure and cardiovascular health, increase endorphin release, encourage communication and movement, and decrease feelings of isolation and depression. Vente and Momo can perform more than 40 commands specifically designed to engage patients in activities that stimulate healing and recovery and alleviate pain. Despite the impact of the therapy and its benefits, few insurance companies will cover the cost of child life services or animal-assisted therapy, so UCSF’s program is fully funded by private donations.
Please help us bring joy and comfort to families this holiday season by making a donation. Gifts can be made online through this crowdfunding page, or checks can be dropped off in any of the secure dropboxes in UDAR. Please indicate the allocation code B2313 on your check.
The Community Engagement Crew