Association of Saskatchewan Realtors support therapy dogs

Association of Saskatchewan Realtors support therapy dogs

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From left: Realtors Wanda Smith and Margie Lynch, who is also a St. John Ambulance volunteer; Taffy, a Scottish terrier; ASR CEO Gord Archibald; Realtors Lane Bogehean and Ian Johnston; and St. John Ambulance director of community services Ashley Balysky.
From left: Realtors Wanda Smith and Margie Lynch, who is also a St. John Ambulance volunteer; Taffy, a Scottish terrier; ASR CEO Gord Archibald; Realtors Lane Bogehean and Ian Johnston; and St. John Ambulance director of community services Ashley Balysky.

Regina Realtors had the opportunity to see how St. John Ambulance is making the most of its $5,000 grant from the Association of Saskatchewan Realtors (ASR) Quality of Life Legacy Fund to support their Therapy Dog Program.

Therapy dogs and their volunteer handlers provide comfort, companionship and joy to people. They work in a variety of settings, including airports, schools and senior homes.

Realtors joined University of Regina students as they met the dogs. Some students stayed only to get in a few pats, others remained for the full two hours to enjoy the canine companionship. The one constant was the smile on everyone’s face at the sight of the pooches.

“Some of these kids are away from home for the first time. Having a few minutes with the dogs is comforting to them and may take away some of the home sickness,” says Margie Lynch, St. John Ambulance volunteer handler and Regina Realtor.

“We love that St. John Ambulance has taken up this project,” says Bill Madder, ASR CEO. “It’s a unique way to improve quality of life – and that’s the goal of our legacy fund.”

The Quality of Life Legacy awards grants to six community organizations from different regions of the province on an annual basis. The Legacy Grant Program will accept applications again in January 2017.