BENEFITING: Paws and Think, Inc.
Many of our local youth struggle in life and end up in detention facilities where they seldom receive the kind of rehabilitation that would turn things around for them. There is one nonprofit organization, Paws & Think, that has innovated a way to help these kids with Animal Assisted Therapy. They pair the kids at Marion County Juvenile Detention Center with dogs from Indianapolis Animal Care and Control. The program staff show the kids how to teach basic obedience skills to the dogs. The kids, some of whom have experience with dogs only in the context of police or dog fighting, learn empathy, patience and that they have the capacity to turn things around, both for the dogs in the program and for themselves. P&T relies on volunteers who tirelessly give their time to the local community, including the youth at the Detention Center, who benefit enormously from the therapeutic assistance that these dogs give.