2 minute read

"Look at That Little Dog Go"

“Look at That Little Dog Go”

The story of how one amazing pug is bringing joy to the elderly - all thanks to you!

One of the most impactful ways Hand in Paw Therapy Teams have been able to serve the community this year is by virtually visiting nursing home residents. Due to COVID restrictions, these residents were especially isolated and lonely, unable to see their family members in-person. But with your help, Hand in Paw Therapy Teams rose to the occasion and started bringing comfort and joy to the elderly online!

To achieve these visits, Therapy Teams start a video chat online and are then led around the building on a computer or iPad by a program partner so they can talk individually with the residents. Annesley Streets, Activities Assistant Coordinator, helps facilitate these visits at Galleria Woods Senior Living Community and knows how much they mean to the residents:

Both assisted living and skilled nursing have really enjoyed the virtual visits with Hand in Paw. There is definitely a change in demeanor when we do the visits – it is such a bright spot in their day. They go from sleepy and bored to brighter eyes, smirks, and laughter. The visits always end in laughter and smiles and oftentimes a memory about their own dogs.

While there are some constraints to visiting virtually, one benefit of virtual programming is that Therapy Teams can really get creative in the ways they conduct a visit. MC Stewart and her pug Vivienne Claire are PAWfect examples of just how creative teams can be! To make their visits especially fun, they bust out props and music and put on a whole tricks show! Vivienne makes residents smile with her amazing ability to play the piano, push a shopping cart, dance with her mom, and much more.

These beneficial and FUN virtual visits would not happen without the generosity of our donors and volunteers!

"MC and Vivienne have been fantastic because they have such an engaging setup and energetic routine. The residents say things like ‘look at that little dog go’ and ‘look she’s giving her treats!’. They love waving back when Vivienne waves at them,” says Annesley.

These beneficial and FUN virtual visits would not happen without the generosity of our donors and volunteers. Your dedication has raised the level of service Hand in Paw is able to provide to vulnerable and worthy citizens in our community.

To support this program and help us reach even more nursing home residents, please donate on our website at handinpaw.org/donate.

Watch their performance at handinpaw.org/showtime