Please join Harbor Animal Hospital in raising money for the Child Life Services team at Mary Bridge that includes the amazing Olaf! Olaf is a 6-year-old expertly trained and certified facility dog that specializes with pediatric patients. He is an instrumental part of the work they do and a true companion for Mary Bridge patients. Olaf’s job is to motivate, comfort, and inspire pediatric patients, helping them through various treatments and procedures.
Dr. Ann Valenti and I had the opportunity to meet Olaf and tour Mary Bridge Children's Hospital together. We saw first-hand the way people lit up when they saw Olaf and the joy he brings to their lives daily. Kristen Bishop, Olaf’s handler, is a Certified Child Life Specialist at Mary Bridge Outpatient Specialty Clinic. Olaf and Kristen were matched as a team in April 2019. We saw the instant connection between her and Olaf and the bond they have built through their inspiring work giving patients peace and courage. Olaf and Kristen showed us a few of his 40 commands that he uses in his work with patients. He nudges pages of books, participates in puzzles, and is obsessed with fetch which helps to comfort, motivate and distract patients through their challenging medical experiences.
As a mother of 5, I have been on the receiving end of this team and have felt the comfort and peace it brought my kids and myself during times of high stress and anxiety. We are incredibly grateful for their work and commitment to Mary Bridge patients and their families as well as this opportunity to help the amazing Child Life Services team!
We are raising money for books, toys, Olaf stuffed animals, craft supplies and any other tools the Child Life Service team needs for their work.
You can learn more about Olaf and follow his adventures @marybridgefacilitydogs on Instagram or visit Child Life Services for more information.