Weʼve raised £80 to Provide free Therapeutic Interactions with our Therapy Miniature Pigs at Children's Hospices and Centres for Children with Short Lives
- Funded on Saturday, 29th June 2019
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SUPPORTING CHILDREN WITH SPECIAL NEEDS AND SHORT LIVES WITH ANIMAL ASSISTED THERAPY - THE UK'S FIRST CERTIFIED THERAPY MINI PIGS
We run a family business, The Pigfather ltd, which was started in 2017 out of a desire to help vulnerable people in our communities to connect with animals in a meaningful way, promoting therapeutic interactions, creating happy memories, assisting in the expression of verbal and non-verbal communication and inspiring positive relationships between animals and people.
The benefits of friendly, well trained animals to the human emotional and physical wellbeing are numerous and well documented. There have been a lot of reports on the beneficial influences of such interactions especially for children with autism, learning disabilities, mental health issues and epilepsy. Our many years in the nursing profession together with the personal experience of looking after a disabled child showed us just how beneficial these interactions can be, ranging from increased ability to focus, greatly improved mood and behaviour, increased feelings of self-worth, the reduction of stress, the learning process of expression and understanding own emotions and feelings and the opportunity to learn new skills and enable the brain to create new communication connections and preserve its functions to name but a few.
Why Pigs for Pet Therapy? Pigs have been found to be in the top four most intelligent animals surpassing even dogs when it comes to learning and training. In the USA pet pigs are very popular, and they have also recently started to be trained as Pets for Therapy, which has been hugely successful. After doing some research we realized that in the UK Pig Therapy is a novel concept, and there are no Certification bodies to offer guidance, support or training for a pet pig to become a Therapy Pig. Pigs are strong, sturdy animals and will not get frightened easily when properly trained, which is perfect for children/adults with special needs. This is where we spotted a need for us to offer this incredible service to our communities.
After many years of considering keeping Pigs as Pets, we finally purchased three miniature piglets in 2018 and embarked them onto an AMPA Mini Pig Pet Therapy Training Program. Fast forward several months of hard work and we now have the UK’s first fully Certified Therapy Pigs, offering an incredibly unique mobile service in London and the South East.
Since the birth of The Pigfather, we have had numerous requests for therapy pigs to attend a variety of venues, from private bookings to locations with shared access from service users. During the 2018 we have attended a number of these events, offering free therapeutic interactions with our miniature pigs, raising money for Charities such as Mind and The New Dawn Foundation, which is our own Charity.The Pigfather - about us
However, we are beginning to face increasing difficulties in meeting the ever-expanding needs of our communities. With the tightening borough budgets and reduced personal incomes, many vulnerable families with children or adults with special needs are finding it more difficult to afford to pay for our services. Being a very young business ourselves with large overheads, sadly, we are unable to provide free Therapy Services to the increasing number of families who are interested in our Therapy Pigs and who would greatly benefit from such an amazing experience.
In our quest to find answers to how we could still provide an invaluable Pet Therapy Service to most vulnerable children with special needs and disabilities, we have decided to ask for donations and sponsorships. Through The New Dawn Foundation, a Charity we established in 2012 to meet the needs in our communities, we ourselves have raised thousands of pounds for valuable services, from helping to build a school in Zambia, to donating money for Sharing Lives charity and the homeless via Hope Worldwide.
With the funds donated to us by you, the generous public and corporations, we could provide our Services to places such as Special Education Schools, Special Residential Schools, Sebastian Action Trust for children with severe medical conditions (the Bluebells and the Woodlands Centers that provide sensory, leisure opportunities for very ill children and their families and precious moments together in a safe and specially adapted environment), NHS Medical Short Stay Respite Centers where the children have a short stay to enable respite to their families), Children’s Hospices in the South East and visit the Young Carer’s Events organized by the Family Action (siblings who help to care for their brothers or sisters).
We would be very grateful to receive any donations for us to expand our work with people and children who need us most and to carry on with the original aim of The Pigfather – to provide therapeutic interactions with our Miniature Pigs. We would love to raise £1,000 to provide The Woodlands, The Bluebells and Alexander Devine Hospice with free visits from The Pigfather’s Therapy Pigs in 2019.
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Natasha Dominetto started crowdfunding
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Jun 5, 2019
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All the best❣
Mar 1, 2019
Good luck from clare and summer x
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About the fundraiser
I am a former Practice Nurse - Sister and during my 10 year nursing career I have seen a lot of distress on a daily basis and realised that it was simple things in life that made a difference to how people felt. That is why I started The Pigfather - to provide Animal Therapy