Thor's video has been viewed on YouTube over 1300 times (not including views through my blog or on Facebook) - it's wonderful to see how many people have been sharing our story. Many of those people have donated and I'm very grateful - it's truly a blessing to see how many people are willing to help a little boy in need.
If you have the chance to watch it, tonight on Dateline there will be a story about one family who received 2 service dogs from 4 Paws for Ability. Their small community rallied together to help raise the funds needed for two service dogs...amazing! (*edit: they didn't air the 4 Paws segment of the story last night but it was worth watching! Here is the link to the 4 Paws piece.)
I'd like to take a moment now to mention a very special little girl who lost her life this week. *Kristina Vlassenko, a 10 year old girl with Autism, wandered away from her home Monday afternoon. The following morning, little Kristina was found at a construction site - she drowned in a water filled hole. My heart broke for this family, just as it broke for three year old **Adam's family just a month ago. Adam was also autistic, and he wandered away from his home while he was outside playing with his sister. He was missing for a month before he was discovered along the banks of the Mille-Isles River.
These stories are more common than you think - and every time I hear about them it hurts me to the core. I can't help but wonder how different these children's stories would have been had they been under the watch of an Autism Service Dog...a dog trained to be tethered to the child, to alert the parent when the child wanders out of the yard, and (most importantly) trained to track the child if they do go missing.
I am terrified that Thor will become one of those news stories. Which is why I spend my nights writing letters and asking for donations. I'm a single mom with very little income - we make do with what we have and we have a happy life. But I don't have the money needed to get Thor a service dog. A best friend trained to calm him, help him function in public, stop him from hurting himself, and to find him if he manages to slip away. A dog that could very well save his life.
Thank you to everyone who has helped us this far...your support and donations mean more to me than you could ever know.
*read more about Kristina here.
** read more about Adam here.