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Canine Partners is transforming lives of people with disabilities

A generous funding of £5,000 from the Neil Murphy Fund has helped with the training of Spud so he can assist his new owner James.

With funding from the Neil Murphy Fund, Canine Partners was able to purchase a Labrador cross golden retriever puppy called Spud, together with equipment and training for a full year. All the expenses involved in looking after and training Spud were met by the Neil Murphy Fund. Canine Partners trained Spud in many different environments to enable him to successfully transform lives of people with disabilities. After his training, Spud was partnered with James, who has Guillain-Barre Syndrome, a rare disease which attacks the peripheral nervous system resulting in high risk of falls and lost sensation in limbs.

James was diagnosed with Guillain-Barre Syndrome 25 years ago. This is a rare and serious condition which the body’s immune system attacks the peripheral nervous system by damaging the myelin insulation, causing muscle weakness, pain, deceased sensation and other symptoms. These lead to James being at high risk of falls as he has little sensory feedback to tell him where his links are and reduced muscle strength to allow him to respond quickly and avoid falls. James was effectively paralysed in the acute phase of his illness but his determination to live a full life has been supported by Spud. The assistance of Spud allows James to confidently resume his social activities independently and remain an active member of his local community.

Spud graduates and to ready to go home with James to Scotland

Founded in 1990, Canine Partners has to-date partnered 750 people with assistance dogs across the UK. They provide dogs to people with the most complex disabilities including casualties of war, who have sacrificed so much for their country to enable them to get the support and companionship they deserve to live a healthy and independent life.

Canine Partners is wholly dependent on public donations to continue its work and train these amazing dogs that provide life changing support.

If you’d like to support local charities and groups by setting up your own fund with us, please contact Katy Green at Leicestershire and Rutland Community Foundation on 0116 262 4804 or email: katy.green@llrcommunityfoundation.org.uk