Hello dear reader!
Certainly, these are critical topics for our financial futures, but this year we also want to share good things that are happening in the world. Simply put, it’s a beautiful thing to be reminded of the good in the world.
Rescued Dogs Become The Rescuers
The National Disaster Search Dog Foundation (SDF) is a nonprofit organization that trains dogs rescued from shelters to become rescuers themselves. When a natural disaster strikes, or a train derails, or a building crumbles, some of the first responders to the site are SDF-trained search-and-rescue units with one goal: to find survivors in the rubble.
- 15 SDF search-and-rescue teams were deployed to affected areas in Texas following Hurricane Harvey (August, 2017).
- 16 SDF teams were deployed to affected areas in Florida following Hurricane Irma (September, 2017).
- 7 SDF teams were dispatched to Mexico City to search for survivors after a 7.1 magnitude earthquake (September, 2017).
- 5 SDF teams traveled to Puerto Rice and surrounding islands after the catastrophic Hurricane Maria made landfall.
- 18 SDF teams were sent to Montecito, California after heavy rains led to mudslides that swept away entire homes (January, 2018).
The organization recruits (rescues!) dogs from shelters and breed rescue groups from across the county. The dogs enter into a lengthy professional training program at SDF’s National Training Center in Santa Paula, California, for 8 to 10 months. Then after graduation, the SDF dogs are partnered with firefighters and other first responders―and at no cost to their departments.
SDF was founded in 1996 by Wilma Melville after she and her search dog were one of the FEMA-Certified Canine Search Specialists deployed to the Oklahoma City Bombing in 1995. Wilma was convinced that America needed more highly trained human-canine teams to respond to disasters, so she founded the National Disaster Search Dog Foundation. The organization’s mission is “to strengthen disaster response in America by rescuing and recruiting dogs and partnering them with firefighters and other first responders to find people buried alive in the wreckage of disasters.”
The dogs who are recruited for SDF training often have traits that would make them less likely to be adopted from the shelter. In canine recruitment SDF looks for dogs who are bold, energetic, intense, and focused: “We need dogs with an obsessive, visceral response to a toy, and an insatiable desire to chase, hunt and possess it!”
Since its inception, 192 dogs have graduated from SDF’s training program. Once a dog is rescued by SDF, he or she will have lifetime care. This organization helps to save many lives― the lives of people in the wake of a disaster and the lives of shelter dogs who are nearly-unadoptable.
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’“
– Martin Luther King, Jr.
It doesn’t take money or talent to do something good for another. Create your own good happenings in the world. We’d love to hear about the kindness you spread into the world! Feel free to post stories about the good things you do or witness on our Facebook page!
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