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94 Reviews
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June 24, 2013

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June 24, 2013

I have known the Picards for 12 years now and I just graduated from their bootcamp with my third service dog. Memphis is a mobility assistance/ PTSD support dog. All the staff are professional, very kind and compassionate. They always know how to match the right dog with the right person and I am very happy with my new dog. Lu Picard is an incredible woman and I admire her tremendously. Because I survived horrendous child abuse, I often feel very fragmented. Having the right dog has turned my life around and I can work and have a good social life. I also have a healing spiritual life and I now have moments of great joy. My name is Briana Bittel and my canine partner is Memphis.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

They know what they are doing!

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

June 11, 2013

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June 11, 2013

I am a 100% disabled veteran. On Retirees Recognition Day at West Point, I met East Coast Assistance Dogs and asked about their program to help the disabled. We had a short conversation and they went to work immediately on my behalf arranging all the paperwork and then I ran it through my physicians at the Veterans Hospital. After 14 months four of us with similar disabilities were brought to their dormitory and we spent a little over two weeks being trained on dogs, their physiology, psychology , care and grooming, all the commands, and working with them in public. We lived with our dogs 24/7 and after a final exam in public we graduated at a special ceremony in a packed civic center. I call our new lives "the miracle of the dogs" as each of us are better off. I don't consider Iris a Golden Retriever. To me she is Iris and as much a part of me as any person could ever get. Together we have driven across the USA twice and flown to Germany. She is close day and night and I could not imagine where I would be today without her. Lt. Col. Bill Northacker, USA, Retired.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Have a veterinarian give us a day's worth of instruction as well as show us how to treat simple health issues. Also would include an attorney to talk about Title 3, Public Accommodations of the ADA.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

June 6, 2013

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June 6, 2013

I move to CT from PR looking desperetly medical help for my daughter. Something was going on I didnt understand my own daughter. She was no learning at all, etc and the Medical Providers just blame the age and just acting as a normal Hyper child. But I knew something was wrong.

In an
instant my word turned upside down. I had to put a side all my goals and dreams including my profession . I had to decide between my dreams or my daughter health. I had to decide gave a huge step back and started from CERO. So without no much time, I had to plan moving to CT in just two weeks. A Saturday I just decided to buy the flight tickets, Monday I gave the notice of my employer that in two weeks I will not longer can work for the company ( a great company). I had to finish in two weeks an ACCESS program I was building and make an user manual. Last day of work Sept 21 and in time could finish the program and the manual. I depart from PR arrived at CT on Sept 22, 2007 at 11 pm alone with my daughter on sept 2007, no family at all. Just with our luggage, medical documents and some of her favorite toys. And a good family that open their house to live with them for a month. I didnt know them, the only thing I knew that my neighbors already knew them.

My daughter have several mental illness. She was diagnosed on 2007 here in Hartford CT with Bipolar I (with hallucinations), ADHD, Learning Disabilities, Depression. A shocking hard diagnose for a child of 7 years old. Despite of her conditions, both commited to be a team to deal with her conditions and fight the good fight learning more about her condition, therapy and through a lot of medications. Actually she takes 6 strong medications twice a day. One of it is Haldol. this med is given to patients in psychiary ER and in top of that it suppose to be Haldol or Seroquel. So finally she had to take both with the other 4 meds. Her condition is more complex and the medication doesnt do what they suppose to do like disappearing-stop the hallucinations. She is sensitive to the meds (affecting her heart) so two of them cannot be increased.

One day a friend (23 years old) was recently diagnosed with bipolar. So I talked to her to talk to my daughter. Remember one of my daughter words to my friend.... "You know? It is so hard to deal with it". Remember she was seeing starring the sidewalk. My friend and I had to hold the tears. My friend had to wrap up the conversation...

Well since I arrived here on 2007, I havent stop looking for all the help, training we can get. One day I saw a news about a problem with a mother that have 2 autism child and their service dog and Mc Donalds. Of course, the issue was the service dog... Then I realized that I should look for a Service Dog Organization that be specialized on service dog for mental illness patients. Looking for an organization with a good reputation and highly experience in mental illness area. Took me around one month to find the one that fits my daughter needs. It was ECAD. It was like God open the heaven for me and my daughter. During that month I learned about laws, web side central service dog, and the Psychiatry Service Dog Society. Remember right now I found ECAD through the PSD Society.

Since the firt time I started to contact them... They are great!!!! All additional information I needed was given to me. I knew inmediatly that it is a truthful and great organization. When I saw they are partners with Veterans Affairs realized inmediatly it is the kind of Organization have fully acknowledge about Service Dog for Mental Illness patients.

We had been working a year (since 2012) to raised the funds. Because I am alone and my daughter conditions had to set limits who are my friends. And yes, I finished kind isolated and harder to do the raise funding.

Josue "Ace" Acevedo, extraordinaire volunteer of ECAD. He is the one who started to teach me how to do fund raising. For me something that I never thought that I couldnt do it. He have been giving me all the support and guiding me through the whole process on ECAD. I found a good church, my church, Calvary Church in West Hartford have been helping me in organizing fund raising, through the Compation Ministry. Melody Chapman is the person who have been in charge to take this wonderful proyect. The Church is very exhited of the stupendous program that have ECAD for people with Disabilites and spread the word. The church have been committed to my daughter cause. We started recycling 5 cents deposit bottles and they sponsord Karla doing a Pancake Breakfast raising funds. We felt so happy and proud doing this proyect. The idea and the person behind this activity (Pancake Breakfast) and came from his heart was Philip and Kristine Parker. We were so happy because we could raised $1,500 and I was so happy. But I was running out of time. We were so far to the goal and I was getting kind of sad because I thought my daughter couldnt make the Team Training for this summer and have to wait a whole year again. I just praying 24/7 for a miracle from God. Asking to the Lord that move the heart of a Person to sponsor Karla. And I know this person will have a great blessing changing the life of my daughter and her future and every person and the church who had been helping giving a chance of a better, quality of life for my daughter.

My daughter is in really needed of the Service Dog, as a child at risk and my health was getting more affected. Kind of 24/7 taking care of my daughter. Lack of sleep, all the responsability as the only headhouse... Too much to handle but never giving up.

The church and our prayers were listened and the miracle had came all over us. Someone completed the amount of the balance due. Barbara gave me the news on June 4. That day I was so stressed out and with an anxiety attack. Had to return home inmediatly. I always overcome this but this time was a hard one. While I was trying to relax like 30 min later I received the call of Barbara Jenkel. When she asked me if we could do the training for this summer and someone paid the big balance due. I was shoked I had to make sure i was not dreaming when I finished with Barbara by phone. I laughed, I cried of hapiness because the first thing comes to my mind my daughter now will have a future and all the blessing that will come with it. I had to knee and give thanks for the things that God had done and how God direct people to open their heart to help us. Giving a chance of a better life to childs and adults at risk.

ECAD and Josue "Ace" Acevedo are stupendous and fantastics. Doing a great job for all their clients. They are at the Top of any expectation.

Calvary Church and the person who open its heart for this great gift of life.

All together changed our lives and future for good. My daughter is thanksful because she have dreams to be an useful and successfull person for this world. We both have a better look at her future.

I WILL BE THANKSFULL FOR EVER.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

NONE

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

June 5, 2013

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June 5, 2013

My son Troy Roberts has Autism. We went to ECAD 3 years ago for help. We got a beautiful "yellow puppy" named Sierra. Actually, she chose my son. Once you are in ECAD's door, you become family.
They make sure you are trained properly and even answer "dumb" questions. Troy didn't have many
words 3 years ago, but now he is trying to command Sierra. It's cute when he plays lay down boy and she will respond to him. When I was trying to get even information about a service dog for Troy, Ohio had nothing for us. When I called ECAD I got fast response! I couldn't believe it. I think it took us 6 - 8 months total time from first phone call until Sierra was home with us. Ecad keeps in touch or you can always call them with questions. If you can make a higher recommendation than 5 stars, it would be infinate. Thank you ECAD !!!

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Nothing about the organization itself. Would love it if they could get money to renovate the offices and building and area grounds.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

June 5, 2013

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June 5, 2013

We are currently in the process of getting our dog for our son who has a mitochondrial disease. We will be attending our training camp this summer. Our experience up to this point has been very good. This firm is professional, caring and compassionate. We attended our interview in November 2011 and had a very good experience. The organization keeps us updated and quickly answers any questions we have. It's a top notch firm.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

June 5, 2013

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2 previous reviews - show all
April 5, 2013

My dog Somerset "(Somer") and I have been together a little over a year. It has been a life-changing experience for me. In addition to being my friend and helper, Somer has helped me to make new f... more

June 5, 2013

I received my dog in 2012 and life has definitely changed for the better. My dog Somerset ("Somer") is many things: helper, companion and hero, to name just a few. She gives my life meaning & purpose. Together we can do anything.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

April 5, 2013
1 person found this review helpful

My dog Somerset "(Somer") and I have been together a little over a year. It has been a life-changing experience for me. In addition to being my friend and helper, Somer has helped me to make new friends and overcome shyness and depression. (I have been on antidepressants since the age of 16 but now take less medication. The dog helps me more than the medicine ever did.) I also feel that, thanks to ECAD, I have friends for life.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

October 23, 2012

I was matched with 2 year old Somerset in March 2012. She has improved my life in so many ways. In addition to increasing my independence, she has made me feel more comfortable in public and less anxious in social situations. I thank God every day for ECAD and bringing usd together.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

June 5, 2013

more


1 previous review
September 9, 2010

My name is Danielle Ciccotti and I am 16 years old. I have had a service dog since I was 6 yrs old. My 1st dog died in Aug 2009. In Oct I submitted an application to ECAD and they saved my life by ... more

June 5, 2013

We received a service dog through ECAD and my daughters whole life was changed. He provided balance for her and that gave me peace of mind. The staff and volunteers made our experience so wonderful. we give them 5 stars!

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

September 9, 2010

My name is Danielle Ciccotti and I am 16 years old. I have had a service dog since I was 6 yrs old. My 1st dog died in Aug 2009. In Oct I submitted an application to ECAD and they saved my life by allowing me to be in their Nov bootcamp. I left bootcamp with a dog named Rover. He was very different then my 1st dog. He has made me very good at throwing, reading, walking,he helps me break the ice with people and I use to have terrible tummy aches. But now all that has changed. I love Rover so much. He is the best dog in the workd. He goes to High School with me and that is not an easy place to be. ECAD really cares about the client.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my daily living.

More feedback...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

November 30, 2012
1 person found this review helpful

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November 30, 2012
1 person found this review helpful

Last August, I received a service dog from ECAD and he has changed my life! I have a neuromuscular disease and am confined to the use of an electric wheelchair to get around. I was desperate to maintain my independence, and not become dependent on my family or caregivers. My amazing Service Dog has made this possible. I no longer worry about getting around or being safe when he is with me. The ECAD organization empowered me and my Service Dog. Their dedication and expertise is a combination that makes this a very special organization.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

October 25, 2012
2 people found this review helpful

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October 25, 2012
2 people found this review helpful

The entire ECAD team is wonderful! From application to graduation everyone we met wore their heartsontheir sleeves and always had a hand ready to help in every way.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

October 25, 2012

more


1 previous review
October 25, 2011

Having Muscular Dystrophy, makes me dependent on a wheelchair and others for help constantly. A Service Dog would help me gain some independence back and would also take a little bit of weight off my ... more

October 25, 2012

I received Billy Spezzano this past summer and he has changed my life in so many ways, thanks to ECAD. During Team Training, everyone was so helpful in making sure that we worked well together. Lu is very understanding when it comes to the client's needs and has helped me so much, even after Team Training. I've looked at other Service Dog organizations but I felt that they made it more of a business than an actual place to help people, which is why I chose ECAD. I felt more at home when I was there.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

October 25, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

Having Muscular Dystrophy, makes me dependent on a wheelchair and others for help constantly. A Service Dog would help me gain some independence back and would also take a little bit of weight off my family. After visiting a Service Dog facility in November of last year and in a way being scammed to give money without knowing if I could even be matched with a dog, I almost gave up on looking until I found ECAD online. In March of this year, I applied there for a Service Dog and got a response back the next day to plan an interview date. When I visited the Dobbs Ferry, NY facility in June, the staff made me feel extremely comfortable and were great about certain accommodations. I also got to meet some of the dogs and tour the facility. As of right now, I'm fundraising for a dog and will hopefully do Team Training sometime in the Fall of 2012. I'm very excited to be able to have a chance to go through this experience and I'm very glad that it's with ECAD.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Will hopefully be a Service Dog recipient next Fall.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I wouldn't change anything but wish that more people were better educated on what Service Dogs are.

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Wash and groom up to 10 dogsSocialize with a new litter of puppiesDecorate & Prepare a graduation ceremonyAssist in general office work; filing, mailings, copies, etc.Participate at awareness events Volunteer