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66 Reviews
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December 31, 2012

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December 31, 2012

I can't say enough good things about the volunteers I came in contact with while I was in class! S. drove me to church ( twice!) and grilled a BBQ one evening. The volunteers I met at the Sarasota gift shop were so nice! They were excited about meeting us snd our guides. We came in from the blistering heat and they had cool drinks and snacks. One volunteer gave the ladies a manicure before our graduation. The puppy raisers were... My heros. JP ( my guide) has such great manners and is well adjusted. Anyone looking into volunteering should know that there are a variety of jobs and that you will become part of a big happy family!
LP and JP

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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 3, 2012

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October 3, 2012

Southeastern Guide Dog went over and beyond our expectations. My husband lost his eye sight over a year and a half ago, a very difficult situation for not only him but for the entire family. As my husband attended classes at the Lighthouse for the Blind I began to search for Guide Dogs. There was one facility as close as Mississippi and as far as California. While searching the internet for many reasons Southeastern Guide Dog caught my attention more than others. The facility looked very clean, organized, the puppy cam was amazing, the details of the training were well explained and I was quite impressed about the detailed screening of the person that was to receive the guide dog. The next thing I knew I was filling out the application on line. What seemed like forever, after the background check took place, a kind professional person called to schedule an at home interview. About a month later a person came from Florida and interviewed my husband, took him for a walk with a harness and leash to measure his speed, strength and height. She looked at the home, answered our questions, played with our 2 boxers and told us they would be back in touch with us. A short time after we decided to go to Florida to personally visit the grounds. We were received by the staff and they gave us the tour. They actually put a harness on one of the guide dogs and let my husband walk with him. They made my husband feel like there was nothing more important in the world than him. It was the best thing that happened to him since he lost his sight. We prayed every day that he would be accepted by Southeastern Guide Dog. One day we received the magic phone call and he was asked if he could attend the class that started in October...Are you kidding, the scream of joy and tears were unavoidable. The day we arrived he was greeted by 3 professional trainers that entered his luggage and showed him to his dorm and helped him unpack and get comfortable . Amazing, his dorm had a large private bath, tv, closet, night stands, a large bed and a desk. He said he felt like he was in a 5 star hotel. Southeastern provided absolutely everything even the guide dog he needed at no cost what so ever to us. We could not have had Lucy if there was a cost involved. A Chef prepared the meals for the students, my husband had 3 of the most professional, kind, loving,understanding trainers and staff with him at all times. His 26 days there were the hardest but the most important days of his life. He not only learned to become more self dependent they taught him to trust his Guide Dog Lucy 100%. They are one when she has her harness on. Southeastern Guide Dog will always be in our hearts. It is so hard to explain what it means to regain your independence, to have Lucy at my husbands side 24hours a day. I trust Lucy with my husbands life thanks to Southeastern Guide Dog. They have opened a whole new meaning in our lives. Southeastern Guide Dog is a true non profit organization that knows how to treat and understands the persons coming for their guide dog in a very professional, loving, understanding 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 2, 2012
1 person found this review helpful

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October 2, 2012
1 person found this review helpful

I am visually impaired and I received my guide dog from Southeastern Guide Dogs a over five years ago. Their program is the best in the nation! The quality of the dogs they breed, the quality of their facility and staff, are truly amazing. I have traveled all over the world with my guide dog with confidence. They provide amazing graduate care and follow up after placement. This is a wonderful organization to support with your time and donations, please consider them in your non profit giving.

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 1, 2012
1 person found this review helpful

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October 1, 2012
1 person found this review helpful

Southeastern Guide Dogs is second to none in professionalism, compassion, and customer service! They treat you like you're one of the family and are committed to making the client happy. I received my very first guide dog from Southeastern. In a world where quantity semms to be the mindset of most, Southeastern provides the quality that one only dreams of. The ehtire staff was friendly, eager to help, and happy to do so.

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 23, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

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Review from CharityNavigator
October 23, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

Everything aout Southeastern Guide Dogs is first class. From the day I arrived until the day I left, I was treated with the utmost respect. The experience gave me a new lease on life...in fact, it gave me back my life. Thank you Southastern Guide Dogs!

The Great!

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

My personal life

Ways to make it better...

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

None

November 3, 2010
1 person found this review helpful

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November 3, 2010
1 person found this review helpful

SEGD came into my life approximately 6 years ago. I was a legally blind veteran with strong mobility skills using a cane. From the time of my discharge from active duty my VIST coordinator at the VA hospital plus my wife had recomended me to get a guide dog. I did not think I needed a guide dog even though I had been struck by an automobile, breaking my leg plus stuck on public transportation for 3 hours because the driver forgot that I was blind. I still was reluctant to take on the responsibility of a guide dog. I wasn't really sure how one could benefit me. After 5 years of incidence of people yelling at me because I tripped them sticking my cane out in front of me and the incidence like above I finally filled out an application for SEGD. With reservations I started class a resident program, I lovingly call "doggy boot camp". I was matched with a beautiful intelligent dog named VAN. The ease at which I navigate, public transportation, shopping malls, etc. is a remarkable change from transiting such places with the white cane. People immediately see and recognize Van as a working dog. The people at SEGD couldn't have done a better job matching me with Van. Even when graduate services had sent out an instructor to my home when Van injured himself and was unable to work for a few months, the instructor worked with Van and I and got our focus back in order. They are always there to answer questions and provide assistance when needed. I can not say enough about the staffs professionalism and the quality of the facilities that they have. I can think of no other organization that can increase a visually impaired person's quality of life in such a great fashion. This service being provided to me at absolutely no cost to myself. SEGD opperates strickly on donations accepting no government funds.

The Great!

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

As a student and now as a benificiary of graduate services from SEGD

Ways to make it better...

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

I can't think of any changes that I would make only to help them find more finances to keep them going and be able to provide services to as many blind and disabled clients as possible.

October 27, 2010
1 person found this review helpful

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Review from Guidestar
October 27, 2010
1 person found this review helpful

At 68 years old I was told that I was legally blind and would eventually be totally blind by my ophthalmologist. I am a registered professional civil engineer with a lot of experience in construction and was not looking forward to being a person who couldn't perform every day activities. i signed up for a course at the local Manasota Lighthouse which exposed me to every day living skills for people with low vision or blindness. In that course I was exposed to many different agencies available to me and activities available to me to learn things to be active for the rest of my life. One of these agencies was Southeastern Guide Dogs. In this learning process I found that even though I had some vision left now was the time to apply for and obtain a guide dog who could help me find my way from one place to another safely. I set a goal to explore this and researched guide dog schools all over the United States. I found that I lived within 15 minutes of one of the best guide dog schools in the country, Southeastern Guide Dogs. I toured the campus, asked questions and was told that even though I had some vision I was entitled to a guide dog and if I desired one I should sign up to obtain one. I did this, attended the course, and received my first guide dog one year after I was found legally blind. During this course I was trained and treated with respect and dignity and was taught what the dog knew so that I could use the services of the dog intelligently and capably. Since that time we (the dog and I) have become completely bonded and work as team as we were trained by the trainers through this course. Since Graduation I have had occasion to use Graduate Services 2 times, each time they were ready, willing and able to travel to my site to assist me with training techniques to solve my problems. Again, always with dignity. Based on my experiences I would highly recommend Southeastern Guide Dogs as one of the, if not the, premier guide dog school in the United States.

The Great!

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

obtaining a guide dog and becoming a team member with the guide dog so I could function more capably.

Ways to make it better...

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

encourage more people who are losing their vision to look at this school and make themselves available to the school for the services it provides.

October 24, 2010
1 person found this review helpful

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October 24, 2010
1 person found this review helpful

SEGD gave me back my ZEAL for Life with ANGEL,my guidedog. I am one active lady with her. She and I have gone across the USA speaking to other wounded warriors who are Blind to get their butts back out and be the solution and not the problem in solving the needs for us veterans. I was given the best care my 26 days, that I was telling my partner I wanted to bring home the Chef and staff. I learn and grew so much in the short stay. After my first week I cried so much, I didn't realize how much I needed the TLC and Angel until that day. This is the school for anyone needing a Guide or Service Dog.

The Great!

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

AS a client and as a fundraiser. I love this place.

Ways to make it better...

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

Encourage them to continue to work on the follow up with Graduates.

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

How did you find this group?

driving by on my trip to Venice Beach, FL

What, if any, change in your life has this group encouraged?

To get me out and about again. to love life. and live it.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

October 22, 2010
1 person found this review helpful

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October 22, 2010
1 person found this review helpful

Very simply, I have never felt more cared for and respected as I did at SEGDI! My first guide dog is ready to retire, and I am going back to SEGDI in 3 weeks to train with her successor dog. This organization is so true to their Mission Statement. Harvard Business School should take a lesson from them!

The Great!

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

training with and receiving an awesome guide dog.

Ways to make it better...

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

SEGDI has already changed their student rooms to single occupancy, and that was the only change I requested.

October 20, 2010
1 person found this review helpful

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October 20, 2010
1 person found this review helpful

On a warm afternoon, 2008, I entered the front door of an unfamiliar building where I would spend nearly a month in training with my first dog from Southeastern Guide Dogs. Through the years, each of my six other dogs had played an important part in my life, leading me to and from work, helping me walk to stores and parks with my three children, and accompanying me through air ports and train stations. These dogs had helped me navigate street crossings and locate curbs and stairs, find doors, and make my way into banks and restaurants. Even after the children grew up and moved out, I depended on a dog to help me get around. But in March, I was nervous. I knew what to expect from a guide dog, but I had no idea what to expect from Southeastern. What an incredible experience! The trainers really knew their stuff. They handled the dogs with expertise, skill and love. They also worked patiently with each student, giving clear instructions and making themselves available to answer our questions. The rest of the staff were equally as helpful and accommodating. They did their best to make us feel comfortable in our temporary home away from home. I respect the trainers at Southeastern for hours of dedication, teaching dogs over 40 commands. And I am deeply grateful to the puppy raisers, who provide the basic foundation upon which the rest of the training is built. Southeastern Guide Dogs offers an excellent opportunity for blind and visually impaired individuals, like myself, to get the most out of life, with freedom and independence.

The Great!

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

being matched with a successful guide dog.

Ways to make it better...

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

I would like to see it grow in order to help more blind and visually impaired individuals gain greater independence, while at the same time, I hope it can keep its intimate atmosphere and feeling of a smaller organization.

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