Building confidence and community

Carol, Georgie & Julia

Carol* has early stage dementia. Living alone in a remote, rural area, she had become increasingly isolated. Then, working with a dementia support worker, community dog handler Julia brought Georgie to visit for therapy activity sessions… to great effect.

As a result of her dementia, Carol was no longer able to drive and was nervous about using public transport. She became increasingly worried about not being able to see her sister, who’s in a care home. Georgie and Julia from Dogs for Good worked with Carol and her support team to rebuild her confidence to catch the bus.

Shortly after her dog-assisted experience, Carol was able to use the bus independently and make her weekly trip out to her sister. In no time, she was also visiting local shops.

Georgie is a sweet-natured, loving but also expertly trained golden retriever who has alleviated Carol’s anxieties and enabled her to reclaim her independence as well as reconnect with people.

It's fantastic to see a person so animated and engaged with Georgie, who acts as the perfect motivator. Carol’s had a real confidence boost, and is feeling more independent. Georgie supports people to do things themselves, and try new activities or maintain those they enjoy for longer.
When I’m out with Georgie, strangers make eye contact, smile and come over to say hello. It’s so nice to see some friendly faces and have a chat; everyone loves meeting Georgie.

SOCIAL CONNECTOR: Georgie encourages people to stop and chat, and her support and presence makes people like Carol more visible in their communities.

Georgie’s presence prompts people to stop and open up conversations with Carol. Also, Carol’s been able to access local social groups, enabling her to feel part of her community — with the knowledge that others look out for her too.

When I’m out with Georgie, strangers make eye contact, smile and come over to say hello. It’s so nice to see some friendly faces and have a chat, everyone loves meeting Georgie.
– Carol
I enjoyed every bit of my sessions with Georgie. I just enjoyed having her round, I love dogs! I would have missed her if we hadn’t had her. I feel like I’ve got some control back, and can make my own decisions and enjoy more of life.”
— Carol
There have been enormous, and very surprising, benefits. Dogs nurture a tactile side and sense of humour and warmth, bringing wonderful moments of connection. It really is life changing.
– Julia

*Name has been changed to protect the privacy of the individual.

Dogs like Georgie open doors, they connect people, they keep families together, they help make life possible in so many ways. A gift this winter will enable more people to benefit from our dogs.

Support our winter appeal to enable more people to make life possible