Kairi Victoria Quintero Tello

By | Make a Dream Come True

Hello, whether you know a lot about Kairi Victoria or are just learning about her for the first time, we appreciate you taking the time to learn about her. THANK YOU from our family!

Kairi Victoria is 6 years old. She was born on February 2013. She had us wrapped around her finger from day one and melted our hearts with her beautiful smile. Was a quiet, calm and a happy baby. After her first birthday we notice she had some challenges with speech and social interactions. She was not making eye contact or would respond when being called. Kairi Victoria preferred to be alone instead of playing with her peers. Kairi Victoria was diagnosed with Severe Autism on October 20, 2014.

After her diagnose, Kairi Victoria started ABA Therapy (Applied Behavioral Analysis), Speech Therapy (ST), and Occupational Therapy (OT). These therapies helped her with overcome some of her challenges.

Kairi Victoria’s diagnose has affected her in various ways. It affects her social, verbal skills, expressing her emotions which causes self-harm. Kairi Victoria also has difficulty identifying when she is in a dangerous situation. She cannot be left alone.  She must be watched continuously because she is a climber, very active and sometimes might put herself at harm.  She’s a HAPPY active child. Kairi Victoria cannot handle being in large crowds or having disruptions to her daily routine. She likes structure and to know what she will be doing beforehand. When in public she must be in a stroller, or we must hold her and keep her near, or she might wander off.

Kairi Victoria average week includes 10 hours of ABA Therapy (Applied Behavioral Analysis), 1 hour of Occupational Therapy (OT), 1 hour of Horse Therapeutic Riding, and 35 minutes if swimming lessons, as well as 5 days a week in a special education classroom, where she also receives Speech Services.  Kairi Victoria has increase her ability to feed herself independently, by using the spoon, fork and drinking out of a regular cup.  As well as her fine motor skills for a variety of daily activities such as dressing herself with limited assistance, playing with toys more properly, and being able to stay seated for some time while doing an activity. These services have helped her significantly.

Kairi Victoria is a HAPPY child! She has a contagious smile. Kairi Victoria is an energetic and caring daughter. She loves exploring the outdoors, enjoys sensory, and water play. Kairi Victoria loves to go to the beach and enjoys sledding when we go to the snows. She enjoys being hugged, squeezed, and being cuddled. Kairi Victoria always has an appetite. She can eat her tomatoes, avocados, garbanzo beans, strawberries, grapes, blue berries, bananas, steak, chicken, etc… Her favorite food is Pizza! She LOVES food, PERIOD! Kairi Victoria enjoys likes to play matching games and puzzle games on her tablet. Her favorite movies are A bugs Life, Finding Nemo, Finding Dory, Coco, and Mulan. Her favorite shows are Peter Rabbit, Sprit Riding Free, Mickey Mouse Club House, Learning Songs by Little Baby Bum, and Masha and the Bear. She loves to dance to the music of the shows. She likes music in general.

In recent months friends and family members have suggested getting a service dog for Kairi Victoria. I did some online research and came across 4 Paws for Ability in Ohio. 4 Paws for Ability provides service dogs who are trained to work with special needs children. I completed the application process and I am excited to hear that Kairi Victoria is approved and accepted into the program!

Having an Autism Assistant Dog would open a world of possibilities for Kairi Victoria. The assistant dog will help with her behavior disruption, when overwhelmed/meltdowns. Tethering will also help Kairi Victoria stay close, it will help with her social skills, having a steady routine of participating in the dog’s care. This will motivate Kairi Victoria to learn new skills and be physically active while playing and exercising the dog.

It cost is between $40,000 to $60,000 breed, raise, and train an Autism Assistant dog for Kairi Victoria’s’ specific needs. We need to raise $17,000 in support of this mission. The money we raise will go to 4 Paws for Ability directly to help them care and train the dog.

If you would like to help Kairi Victoria gain independence and a furry friend, your donation would be beyond appreciated. Any amount is a step closer towards our goal. If you cannot donate financially, you could always spread the word about our cause. Make others aware of 4 Paws and what they do and bring awareness of Autism and how a service dog can benefit a patient with it.

For more information on what an Autism Assistant dog can do, check out the link below.

https://4pawsforability.org/autism-assistance-dog/

Donations can be made at https://4pawsforability.org/donate-now/. If you donate on the website, please make sure that you include Kairi Victoria Quintero name in the description field.  Donations can also be made via check and mailed to:

4 Paws for Ability
In Honor of Kairi Victoria Quintero Tello
at 253 Dayton Avenue
Xenia, Ohio 45385

** Please be sure to write “in honor of Kairi Victoria Quintero Tello” on the memo line **

Thank you once again,

Kairi Victoria Quintero Tello & Yendi E. Tello

Luke Daniel

By | Make a Dream Come True

Luke is a very active and bright eight-year-old little boy.  He loves reading, LEGOs, playing video games, Super Heroes, and pizza.  He lives in Georgia with his little sister and parents.  Luke was diagnosed with ADHD and Autism 2 years ago.  This makes navigating life a little more difficult for him.  Everyday routines such as trying new foods, experiencing different smells and sounds, going out in public, and communicating with others can lead to anxiety and be very overwhelming for Luke.  When he gets overwhelmed, he will often shut down completely or it will lead to a meltdown which will put Luke in danger of hurting himself or someone else.  He continues working with therapists to learn how to manage these meltdowns.

We believe an Autism Service Dog will help Luke begin to be able navigate his world.  More specifically, the service dog will be trained in Behavior Disruption. When Luke is engaged in repetitive or self-injurious behavior his service dog will be trained to disrupt the behaviors by laying across his lap, nuzzling him, pawing or touching him, and by using deep pressure therapy to calm and redirect him. We are working with 4 Paws for Ability, a nonprofit organization that helps place people with disabilities with a certified service dog. This group is dedicated to helping those in need of help. They work with children as well as adults in making sure the service dog will fit the needs of the handler and help that person succeed in life.  We know Luke is meant for greatness and we believe a service dog will help him realize his greatness.

It costs a minimum of $40,000 dollars for 4 Paws for Ability to train a service dog, and we are committed to raise $17,000 towards Luke’s new companion.  There are a couple of ways you can join us on this journey.  Most importantly, please pray for Luke, his daily challenges, and that we will be able to raise the full amount for this much needed support for him.  Secondly, if you would like to donate, there are several ways you can do this: Donations can be mailed directly to 4 Paws for Ability – be sure to write Luke’s name on the memo line.  Mail checks to:

4 Paws for Ability
In Honor of Luke Daniel
253 Dayton Ave.
Xenia, Ohio, 45385.

If you wish to make an online donation, the website is www.4pawsforability.org/donate-now .  Include Luke’s name on the donation as instructed in the “Description” field of the form on the second page of your Authorize.net donation.  You may also call to make a credit card donation over the phone at (937) 374-0385 – Monday thru Friday 9AM to 4PM EST.

Thank you so much for your support and your donations!

Zeke and Eli Watson

By | Make a Dream Come True

Welcome to our 4 Paws for Ability mission! We, the Watson family, are working to raise $17,000 to bring home a highly trained Multipurpose Service Dog for our two oldest children, Zeke and Eli. With a constellation of conditions they wake up to face every day, each boy is a small but mighty warrior with incredible courage and endurance. A service dog trained and matched to their unique needs will be the faithful partner they need to thrive.

Zeke, age 9, and Eli, age 6, both have Autism and ADHD. In addition, Zeke has hypermobile joints and hypotonia that causes gait problems, as well as severe food allergy and asthma. Eli also has Epilepsy, hypotonia, and difficulty with coordination. He has a unique genetic condition, 1q21.3 Duplication. They are no strangers to hospitals, doctors, medicines, tests, therapies, and medical equipment. These are often overwhelming and anxiety-provoking. When overwhelmed, both tend to cope by stimming, shutting down, melting down, or sometimes even hiding or lashing out.

Zeke is highly verbal and will talk your ear off about his favorite topics: wolves and their conservation, the Legend of Zelda, and Pokemon. He has a brilliant, wide grin and nearly vibrates with energy. If you see him in his element, he might seem to blend in. But just under the surface, he struggles daily with anxiety, social skills, sensory processing, and self-regulation. Change and new things are very difficult for him, and as much as he desperately wants friends and social interaction, he often needs help to navigate situations that remain mysterious to him.

Eli will wiggle right into your heart with a blink of his green eyes from behind his thick glasses! Eli loves dogs and cats, pirates, digging in the dirt, and collecting rocks. Eli also enjoys singing, and can often be heard humming or singing as he plays. Eli has severe delays in social communication and does not engage consistently with his peers. He is extremely impulsive and has little awareness of danger, and is prone to distracted wandering and darting off.

Eli’s seizures began suddenly with Status Epilepticus (a medical emergency, where an extended seizure or repeated seizures do not stop on their own without extensive medical intervention) when he was 3.5 years old. Although medications have helped, he continues to have focal seizures, some of which can be difficult for a human care-giver to catch. Like other seizure parents, we are constantly on alert. We worry not only that he will wander off, but do so and then have a seizure, unable to stay safe or call for help. Because of his type of Epilepsy (focal, beginning in one area, which then spreads to the rest of his brain) and the lack of seizure freedom, this is considered a life-long condition for him and he is always at risk for another Status seizure or a worsening of seizures as his brain grows and changes.

Zeke and Eli’s service dog will be trained in the following:

  • Behavior Disruption (Lap, Nuzzle, Touch, Deep Pressure) for anxiety, sensory overload, and shutdowns/meltdowns. These tasks will also help Eli to recover after more significant seizures, which can leave him tired and disoriented.
  • Tethering will help Eli to stay close, and if he does slip away, scent tracking will help us locate him quickly.
  • Seizure alert will give Eli a little bit of independence, knowing the service dog will get our attention if he is about to have or has a seizure.

Other benefits include a social bridge, the steadying routine of participating in the dog’s care, and the opportunities and motivation to learn new skills and be physically active while exercising and playing with the dog. And you can’t beat its snuggly, furry package!

Our family has been accepted into the program at 4 Paws for Ability, a non-profit 501(c)(3) with over 20 years of experience placing highly trained service dogs with children and veterans with disabilities. Although families are asked to raise $17,000 toward their dog, that is only a fraction of the $40,000-60,000 it takes 4 Paws to breed, raise, and train a dog like ours. As a U.S. military veteran family, we know we’ve come through overwhelming challenges before with the support of friends and family. We can see this mission through as well, with your help!

Donations can be made at https://4pawsforability.org/donate-now/. If you make a donation on the website, please make sure that you include my name (Zeke and Eli Watson) in the description field.  Donations can also be made via check and mailed to
4 Paws for Ability
In Honor of Zeke and Eli Watson
at 253 Dayton Avenue
Xenia, Ohio 45385.

In the memo line make sure you put “In honor of Zeke and Eli Watson.”

Thank you for helping us on this journey!

Jackson Russ

By | Make a Dream Come True

Jackson Russ is eight years old and enjoys music, his iPod, drawing, swinging and cooking.  Jackson was born into a home where drugs, alcohol and tobacco were abused regularly.  He went into foster care and moved into our home when he was six months old along with his biological half-brother Jonah, who is one month younger.  Both boys were born with cocaine in their systems. Jackson was just over 17 months old when his adoption was finalized.  

Jackson began having problems by the time he was two.  He wasn’t speaking yet and seemed to be regressing.  We immediately got him involved with early intervention and when he aged out a year later he was placed in public preschool with an Individualized Education Program.  We have been told by numerous professionals over the years that our son, Jackson Russ, is a “very complicated case.”  He has seen several therapists and been through two intensive in home therapies.  He is officially diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADHD, Sensory Processing Disorder, and Severe Anxiety.  There has been consideration given to Bipolar Disorder and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, but no official diagnosis yet. 

Developmentally, Jackson can be found anywhere between 18 months and 8 years old depending on the day or the moment.  Academically, he is far below an 8-year-old level.  Jackson is repeating first grade this year (2018-2019) but is performing at an early kindergarten level.  He becomes nonverbal at times of dysregulation and resorts to grunting and pointing.  He is on six different medications twice a day to help him with ADHD related behaviors, aggression, sleep issues, and mood swings.  He experiences meltdowns and episodes of extreme anxiety where deep pressure therapy seems to help. He engages in many dangerous self-harming and attention seeking behaviors. Depending on Jackson’s developmental age at the moment, he will bolt when getting out of the car in a busy parking lot or run towards the road.  He will also wander off when he’s not paying attention. An Autism Assistance Dog will significantly improve Jackson’s quality of life and help keep him safe.

It costs 4 Paws between $40,000-$60,000 to raise and properly train a service dog and we are responsible for $17,000 service fee.  If you would like to donate towards Jackson’s Autism Assistance Dog, you may donate by visiting www.4pawsforability.org/donate-now/ and including Jackson’s name in the “Description” field.  To donate by mail, please make checks payable to 4 Paws for Ability and mail to the address below.  Please make sure to write “In Honor of Jackson Russ” on the memo line.  

4 Paws for Ability
In Honor of Jackson Russ
253 Dayton Ave.
Xenia, Ohio 45385

Thank you for supporting our son Jackson!

David & Jen Russ

Izaac Reese

By | Make a Dream Come True

It was 8pm Friday, October 24, 2008 when the Department of Child Services called, “We are in need of an emergency foster care placement for a medically fragile 8-week old infant for a few days. Your name was given as a potential placement. Can you help?” With a brief account of Izaac’s situation, medical condition and multiple diagnosis, we hung up the phone to await his arrival. Just hours later, they arrived at the door with Izaac, his IV poles, feeding tube and medical supplies, hospital discharge papers and a small sack of clothes, diapers and special formula. Izaac had been in Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital NICU for 6 weeks of his short 8 weeks of life. Among other things, Izaac was diagnosed with failure to thrive, encephalitis, meningitis, seizures and prenatal drug exposure.

Fast forward, Izaac was adopted into our family at age 3 and he will soon be turning 10. He has overcome much of the trauma experienced in his young life. However, he still suffers from the effects of in utero drug exposure. He has left temporal lobe brain damage, encephalopathy, ADHD, sensory processing disorder, intellectual disorder, speech/language disorder and more.

Izaac is unable to care for himself and is still in diapers. He is both hyperactive and impulsive. He is cognitively impaired and incautious. He will bolt and run away with no regard for safety, whether at home, in school or in public. He is often unable to sit still and focus. He will unbuckle his seatbelt in the car and remove his safety harness on the school bus. Izaac is easily frustrated and does not handle change well. He displays repetitive behaviors and wipes things. If not supervised he will try to eat things that are inappropriate like dirt, sand, mulch or things found on the ground. He drinks BOOST Kid Essentials 2-3 per day for nutrition as he often refuses to eat regular food related to his sensory issues.

4 Paws for Ability is a 501 c3 non-profit agency that specializes in training service dogs for people with disabilities. They specifically train service dogs for those affected by Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder / Drug Exposure (FASD/DE). The FASD/DE Assistance Dog is trained to help with sensory overload, safety, social lubrication, calming, increased independence, stability, empathy and bonding. When we first visited the 4 Paws for Ability website and read the description of what an FASD/DE Assistance Dog can provide, we knew Izaac needed a four-legged best friend to help him. So, we completed the application and they have already accepted our son into their program.

On average, it costs 4 Paws for Ability $50,000 to breed and train a service dog and we need to raise $17,000 to help 4 Paws for Ability with the cost. All donations (including goods, services, and volunteering at or attending fundraising events) are greatly appreciated. Thank you, in advance, for your generosity. All monetary donations should be made DIRECTLY to:
4 Paws For Ability
In honor of Izaac Reese
253 Dayton Ave.
Xenia, OH 45385

If you wish to make a donation on-line the website is www.4pawsforability.org/donate-now . You must include Izaac Reese in the notes or instructions to merchant section. You may also call to make a credit card donation over the phone at (937) 374-0385 – Monday through Friday 9am-4pm EST or visit our FirstGiving fundraising page at: https://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/aimee-reese/4Paws_Izaac

Dallas Pierce

By | Make a Dream Come True

Dallas is a very sweet boy. He’s got a heart full of love and he is a blessing to his family and everyone who knows him.

When Dallas was 4 years old he was diagnosed with ASD and Global Delay Disorder. This makes things harder for him, like communication, making friends or transitioning away from fun activities.

Sometimes Dallas gets overwhelmed and wants to be alone. Sometimes he wanders in crowds like at the grocery store because when life gets busy around him he feels lost at times.

His doctor at the Kelly O’Leary center for autism believes that Dallas will benefit tremendously from having an autism service dog.

A non-profit organization called 4 Paws for Ability has approved him for a service dog and Dallas could not be more excited! But now we need the help, love and support of our community to fundraise to pay for the service dog training.  Our fundraising goal is $17,000 for 4 Paws for Ability on behalf of Dallas to go towards his service dog.  From birth through training, the cost of placing such a dog in a family like ours is at least $40,000.  Families cover only a portion of the cost, $17,000 – if you can help us with a donation in Dallas’ name, please visit the 4 Paws Donation Page (http://www.4PawsForAbility.org/donate-now). Include Dallas’ name on the donation as instructed in the “Description” field of the form on the second page of your Authorize.net donation.  Donations can also be made by mailing a check with Dallas’ name on the memo line to:

4 Paws for Ability
In Honor of Dallas Pierce
253 Dayton Ave.
Xenia, OH 45385

Every donation will be a blessing and one step closer to changing this sweet boy’s life.

 

Sonia Mann

By | Make a Dream Come True

Sonia is a charismatic 5 year old whose development has never been normal. We first noticed something was amiss at birth when her eye contact gave off a “nobody’s home” vibe. Typical milestones came much later, if at all. She frequently “shut down” and repeated phrases and behaviors. This gave us a cocktail of symptoms that appeared much like autism.

However, autistic girls are often more comfortable with eye contact and more motivated to “fake normal,” leading parents and doctors to dismiss or misdiagnose other tell-tale signs. In Sonia’s case, her smile and eye contact made specialists hesitant to diagnose her, which left us with no explanation or resources for her obvious but unnamed challenges.

Today, her communication skills are severely underdeveloped, and so is her capacity to recognize danger. She regularly leaves the safety of her caregivers and has self-injurious meltdowns when she’s overwhelmed. Her limited interests restrict the quality of her engagement with the world, and though she delights in simple interactions with others, she is unable to interact at anywhere close to an age-appropriate level. She will not struggle to win hearts, but she will likely forever struggle to navigate life without some sort of support.

ENTER SERVICE DOG

Her service dog will be trained in all things Sonia–to track her down if she wanders, to redirect harmful behaviors, to provide calming pressure to her nervous system, and to be an emotional support for her as she navigates her disability. Her companion will facilitate social connection as it will provide predictable, mostly-scripted conversation starters, and will motivate her to learn new words, try new things, and tackle new challenges. We believe a specially-trained service dog is the sidekick she needs to not only survive, but thrive.

From birth through training, the cost of placing such a dog in a family like ours is at least $40,000. Families cover only a portion of the cost, $17,000 – if you can help us with a donation in Sonia’s name, please donate here.

Other ways to donate include or visiting the 4 Paws Donation Page (http://www.4PawsForAbility.org/donate-now). Include Sonia’s name on the donation as instructed in the “Description” field of the form on the second page of your Authorize.net donation.

Donations can also be made by mailing a check with Sonia’s name on the memo line to:

4 Paws for Ability
In Honor of Sonia Mann
253 Dayton Ave.
Xenia, OH 45385

Please help us bring her canine companion home!

Liam Espina

By | Make a Dream Come True

Paws for Liam!

Paws 4 Liam is devoted to providing Liam with a Service Dog specially trained to help a special little boy with Autism. Liam is a 6- year-old boy from Glenview, IL who needs the help of a service dog to help him navigate the difficulties of autism. We have connected with Paws 4 Ability, who will be training Liam’s new pal to help him with communication, mobility, and for Liam’s safety to ensure he stays close.

When Liam was born, he was already melting hearts, with his intense gazes and infectious laughter. Before Liam was 1 he began physical therapy due to his inability to turn himself over or crawl. By 17 months we started to suspect something wasn’t quite right. Liam was not walking, and he was communicating by sounds alone. Liam initially was diagnosed with early developmental delay and began both Speech and OT Therapy. By age three, his verbal communication had not improved, and his anxiety levels began to increase. He would get frustrated and he could not express himself or could not communicate verbally with us and began banging his head.

At age 4 Liam was diagnosed with Autism. We embarked on the journey to learn anything and everything we could so that we understand some of the challenges that Liam will face. Our family was introduced to all sorts of abbreviations and acronyms, such as non-verbal, ABA, IEP, Echoic stemming, picture schedules, transition plans and sensory overload, just to name a few. Kids with Autism are all so very different. The saying, “Once you met one child with Autism, you have met one child with Autism” is very true. The main reason we started researching service dogs was due to Liam’s inability to understand what is safe. Liam will run at a moment’s notice putting himself at risk. Our family researched so many different Organizations and groups. It wasn’t until we saw for our own eyes the amazing impact a service dog has on autistic children at the Child Neurology Conference. These
amazing furry heroes’ and the Organizations that train them are amazing. Our research uncovered so much more that service dogs can do. The Service Dogs can be trained in a
variety of tasks to assist a child. These include behavior disruption to distract and disrupt repetitive behaviors or meltdowns, tethering to prevent and protect a child from wandering, and search and rescue tracking to locate a child who has wandered. To read more about Service Dogs that are trained specifically for autistic children, https://www.rover.com/blog/service-dogs-benefit-autistic-community/

Today, Liam is a, lively and lovable six-year-old who enjoys being outside, running and making his big sister, his Dad and I laugh. He brightens our day and has taught us to celebrate small wins. Liam loves lots of squeezes and pressure for comfort when things are overwhelming or too intense. He has no safety awareness, so Liam requires constant attention and monitoring to prevent him from falling, banging himself against surfaces, wandering or running away.

Liam also has anxiety issues and while he is semi-verbal he uses phrase or sounds in repetition as a coping mechanism. The “repetitive verbal stemming” often keeps him from engaging socially and keeps him from communicating. Liam started 1st grade, which includes new exciting and challenging adventures. Our hope is that Liam’s furry hero, can help him navigate these adventures from the perspective of his special world.

Cost for a Service Dog
It costs more than $40,000 to professionally raise and train a service dog that can meet Liam’s exact needs. Our family is reaching out to ask our friends, families, the community and corporate sponsors to help us reach our goal of bringing his service dog home. Our family will cover a portion of this cost, while we are fundraising for the remaining $17,000, to secure a service dog for Liam.

How you can make a difference
If you can make a donation towards Liam’s service dog, please visit the 4 Paws donation page:
http://www.4PawsForAbility.org/donate-now.

Include “Liam Espina” in the “instructions to merchant” through Authorize.Net. Donations can also be made by mailing a check to 4 Paws for Ability (details below).

4 Paws for Ability
In Honor of Liam Espina
253 Dayton Ave.
Xenia, Ohio, 45385.

Please be sure to include “Liam Espina” on the memo line of the check. Please feel free to contact us at paws4liam@gmail.com and we would be happy to answer any questions you may have or discuss how your generous donation and support can make a huge difference in Liam’s life.

Caleb Nwanorim

By | Make a Dream Come True

Hi! My name is Caleb Nwanorim,

Everyone who knows me calls me Caleb or super awesome K! I’m 7 years old and going on 8 years on September 29th.  I enjoy swimming, cooking, going to school, playing board games, and visiting grandma who is my favorite person in the whole world. Its mostly me, my mother and my annoying sister Ella. Shes 5 and of course my best friend when moms around.

I have autism and developmental disabilities. I enjoy my therapies which i have twice a week at home with my speech therapist and my occupational Therapist. I have been receiving help  with speech and O.T at school everyday for close to 3 years now. I also have increased anxiety due to trauma at school such as being bullied and not being able to talk effectively. My mom is my greatest advocate and fully supports my need to have a service animal. Not only for my disability but because I’m lonely and I need a friend to help me reduce my anxiety and to help me practice my social skills so i can be able to make friends and as well as communicate effectively to others.  

 My speech and language impairments negatively impact my ability to understand and be understood by others when communicating, which frustrates me and increases my anxiety. I also have additional characteristics of anxiety such as issues with social communication, difficulty adapting to new environment, awareness of danger, and difficulty with emotional stability. Having a companion would greatly benefit me because my companion would decrease my overall anxiety and to help me function effectively and independently across settings. I am also unable to complete ADL’s which are also known as activities of daily living due to anxiety symptoms and communication deficits and requires me to get assistance from my mom to help me meet my basic needs several times throughout the day and night like getting dressed. Also having a service animal from 4 Paws for Ability would provide and assist me with safety behavior intervention and prevention of anxiety attacks and meltdowns at home and and in public. Having a best friend around me can provide a soothing and comfortable environment just by spending time. It is a reminder to myself to be patient and calm with myself and others and that I am not alone with my disability. I can also practice communication with a service dog. And finally I will be able to have responsibility by taking care of my friend this will teach me to be more independent and confident inside and outside of my own environment.
My mother Cydnee is trying to get donations for me to get a service dog through 4 Paws for Ability. Please donate to my cause. Thank you for taking the time to read my story.

4 Paws is a non-profit organization (501 3c). 4 Paws for Ability service dogs are trained from birth for a specific person. The cost to train and place these dogs with a disabled child is at least $40,000. Families approved for matching must raise their portion. The required portion for Caleb’s service companion is $17,000. They say, “dogs are a man’s best friend”, and I believe that Caleb will not only have a service dog but a best friend for life which will allow him take on everyday life challenges, all while giving him the independence he desires and deserves as he grows up.

I am planning fundraisers with hopes of raising  $17,000 soon. The wait time is 2 to 2.5 years due to the nature of the extensive training and the number of kids who need a service companion. If you would like to donate in Caleb’s efforts to raise the money needed, you can donate 3 different ways.

By mail – checks made out to 4 Paws for Ability with Caleb Nwanorim on the memo line
Mail to:
4 Paws for Ability
207 Dayton Ave.
Xenia OH 45385

Online
https://4pawsforability.org/donate-now
include Caleb Nwanorim in your Authorize.Net payment.

Phone
credit card donations can be made at (937) 374-0385 Mon-Fri 9am-4pm EST

Benton Arias

By | Make a Dream Come True

God tried to give us a heads up that Benton was going to be a beautiful firecracker by giving him a due date of July 4, 2016. But true to form, Benton did things his way and came a bit early. He decided to enter the world on his older brother’s tenth birthday, which happened to fall on Father’s Day that year. Oh, what a gift he was and still is each day.

He looks, and for the most part acts like a developmentally typical two-year-old. He loves all things sports, all things outdoors, animals, Paw Patrol, and Daniel Tiger. Benton doesn’t seem to really walk anywhere, he either runs or bounces to get from point A to point B. He loves his family and wants to know where everyone is when they are not with him. He loves to play and laugh and wants to involve everyone around in whatever he is doing. Both paternal and maternal grandparents have land and big toys with motors to ride on, which is his favorite thing to do.

So now that you know a little bit about Benton, you might be wondering why he would need a service dog. Like I stated before, he looks developmentally on track, and if you were to meet him in person you probably wouldn’t pick up on a few things that those closest to him notice (maybe it’s just a mom thing). But here’s the deal, Benton cannot be left alone. Ever. I know, I know, he is only two and shouldn’t be left alone anyways, but even at night when he is asleep. In fact, Benton can’t even sleep alone, he must be in bed with an adult.

When Benton was nine months old, he had his first seizure in bed late at night. Over the course of three months, he had a total of six seizures and was in and out of the hospital numerous times. He even had a 72-hour EEG done, where they had wires glued to his head for 72 hours. All of this happened before he was one.

He was diagnosed with Complex Partial Epilepsy w/ developmental delays. Benton’s seizures can either be focal or absence seizures, which appear like he is spacing out, but you cannot get his attention. Or they can be tonic-clonic seizures, what used to be referred to as grand mal seizures. During a tonic-clonic seizure, all the muscles in Benton’s body contract or spasm while he shakes or convulses. It is the scariest and saddest thing I have ever seen either of my children go through. After he comes out of his seizure, Benton tends to be lethargic, tired, cranky, and just not his typical self. His postictal state, the days following his seizures, Benton tends to be unsteady on his feet and falls a lot. After one seizure, he wouldn’t pick up a foot and would drag it most of the time he walked for two days.

Benton takes a daily medication and has a rescue medication in case he has a long seizure he can’t come out of or more than one seizure in a row. The medication has controlled his seizures for the most part, but he does still have breakthrough seizures. Due to his age, he is growing rapidly, and the medication dose must change with his weight gain,

The last clonic tonic seizure Benton had happened late at night. He was in bed and I was not in the room with him. When I finally went to bed, he was actively seizing. This seizure required his rescue medication and he ended up in the emergency department overnight.

If Benton had a seizure alert dog, I would have been alerted when the seizure started, possibly foregoing the need of his rescue medication. At 4 Paws, a dog would be trained specifically for Benton. This dog would learn to alert when he is seizing, give reassurance and comfort when coming out of a seizure or in the hospital setting, and give him stability when he is unsteady postictal. The dog would be trained specifically to meet the needs of Benton. The dog would also bring a peace of mind to his parents and other family and caregivers. We all want Benton to be able to live as normal of a life as possible, and having mom sit in the bathroom while you shower your whole life isn’t normal. Benton deserves to sleep in his bed, and as he grows he deserve to gain independence like playing in his room alone or playing in the backyard.

A properly trained service dog can cost between $40,000-$60,000, but at 4 Paws it has its own funding model that helps eliminate some of that cost to help kids get the dog they need. The cost the families raise through fundraising is $17,000 and that starts here. 4 Paws has a great network to help families along the way, and for that we are grateful.

If you are reading this, thank you for taking the time to learn about our little firecracker, our baby bear, Benton. If you would like to help Benton gain independence and a furever friend, your donation would be beyond appreciated. Any amount is a step towards our goal. If you can not donate financially, you could always spread the word about our cause. Make others aware of 4 Paws and what they do and bring awareness of epilepsy and how a service dog can benefit a patient with it.

For more information on what a seizure alert dog can do, check out the link below.

https://4pawsforability.org/seizure-assistance-dog/

To donate, you may mail checks

** Please be sure to write “in honor of Benton Arias” on the memo line **

4 Paws for Ability, Inc, 253 Dayton Avenue, Xenia, Ohio 45385

OR

https://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/whitney-hurt/Benton

Thank you for your time.

Benton

Whitney

Raymon

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