Charity plans to train more assistance dogs for people with disabilities
HRH meets with volunteers, trustees, staff and supporters of Canine Partners
ON FRIDAY 17th June His Royal Highness The Duke of Gloucester KG GCVO officially opened the new National Training Centre for Canine Partners, (Registered Charity No. 803680), specialising in providing highly trained assistance dogs to people with disabilities.
Completion of the Training Centre marks a significant milestone for the charity, which hopes to double the number of assistance dogs it trains at Heyshott in West Sussex over the next 5 years.
Over 120 loyal supporters, donors, volunteers and fundraisers attended the event that was officially opened by the Charity’s Patron, HRH The Duke of Gloucester. Canine Partners has been converting what was a disused polo yard into its National Training Centre for the past 2 years at a cost of £1.8 million. As the Charity itself receives no government funding, it is wholly dependent on public donations and legacies, help from the Big Lottery Fund and organisations such as Nestlé Purina PetCare Company, Zurich Financial Services and Morgan Stanley Investment.
Each dog is trained over a two-year period at a cost of approximately £10,000. By the time it is partnered with a human, the Canine Partner knows over 100 commands and can help a person with disabilities to perform everyday tasks such as dressing and undressing, picking up dropped items, shopping and washing as well as emergency response procedures.
David Newberry, Chairman of Canine Partners commented: “Our new Training Centre will help us to increase the number of people with disabilities, whose lives we can transform with a Canine Partner. The Charity has come a long way in the past 15 years and we have ambitious goals to achieve. Having our Patron, HRH The Duke of Gloucester, opening the Training Centre really puts a royal seal of approval on all the hard work and dedication we receive from our loyal staff and supporters, without whom we wouldn’t be here.”
For more information on Canine Partners visit www.caninepartners.co.uk or call 08456 580480