Dogs and kids. What could be more appealing. I volunteer with a Golden Retriever (Sophie) and her owner at an after school program at Phoenix Youth At Risk. We arrive at 4 PM just as the kids are finishing their snack. You should see their eyes light up when they see Sophie. The staff can barely contain the kids who want to jump up and immediately hug the dog. They are so excited! Shy kids become boisterous. Boisterous kids learn to share. "When are you coming back?" is the most often asked question. It's so gratifying to know I'm contributing to the the next generation who are learning compassion and caring from their interaction with the lovable Sophie.
My dog and I visit kids at the Crisis Nursery and see first hand how amazing the interaction and responses are between the dog and the children. Gabriel's Angels makes a difference in children's lives and I see it with my own eyes. The experience reminds us of how important it is to give of ourselves in some meaningful way. Thank you to Gabriel's Angels for giving us a special opportunity.
My husband and I became a therapy team for Gabriel's Angels a year ago after we went to a breakfast and learned about the remarkable things this organization did to help break the cycle of violence by interacting with children by just visiting them with our dogs and becoming their friends. As soon as we walk in the door everyweek at the Boys & Girls Club he puts a smile on everyone’s face and he’s greeted like a “Rock Star” and they all swarm around him and give him hugs and then he starts putting out his paw for everyone to shake.
We have now truly seen the difference in the way children act and behave when Dakota’s there and we now are a part of those stories that Pam had shared with us the first year we came here. We’ve had kids that were very shy and hiding behind the pillows to now being the first one in the room and helping us bring out the supplies from our bag. When we sit down in a circle we have one girl that loves to lay down by Dakota and he always proceeds to snuggle over by her and lays his head on her chest – I think he knows she needs some extra loving. We know Dakota loves to visit the kids just as much as the kids love to see him because he'll go pull his vest from the bg and lay it on the floor for us to see. He was a rescue dog and I believe he's paying it forward by being a good friend to all our kids we visit.
Overall, such an amazing group of people and charity. To see the type of impact they have on the community, children and just everyone they touch with the pet therapy teams is exactly why I became involved. Pam is also an amazing CEO and person that truly cares about the mission.
While I do not have therapy dogs myself, I volunteer at Gabriel's Angels to help them with administrative tasks. The work they do is extraordinary - touching at-risk children's lives every day. The work they do now has a huge impact on the adults these children will grow to become. By working with therapy animals, kids learn about empathy, love and trust, enabling them to lead caring, loving lives instead of one's that continue the cycle of abuse to which they've been exposed. Gabriel's Angels currently help 13,000 children a year. That's 13,000 hearts and lives every year that have been touched by these angels. I am honored to help them in my small way, knowing I am helping to truly change children's lives for the better.
Once you meet anyone associated with Gabriel's Angels you are hooked! I have the pleasure of working first hand with Pam Gaber, Founder/CEO as she will be the "Celebrate" keynote speaker for the Tempe Chamber of Commerce Women in Business Conference and Trade Show this year. Pam contributes to the community in so many ways and we truly appreciate her sharing her time and talent with us. Her true gift is the wonderful organization that she, along with staff, board of directors and volunteers, has created to change the lives of children and adults.
I proud to be a part of this great organization and look forward to being more involved in the future!
There are many Children and Family non-profit organizations, but the combination of having pets involved with the teaching of children through Gabriel’s Angels is what makes this Non Profit organization so extraordinary.
My wife and I (Pam & Joe) were fortunate in Feb of 2010 to receive our Golden Retriever, Dakota. Dakota is a “rescued dog” from an Arizona based golden rescue organization. We knew right away that he was a very special animal with a very special, loving disposition. We were then invited to attend the breakfast for Gabriel’s Angels in May 2010. We both attended and learned more about the remarkable work and benefits that Gabriel’s Angels provides to children that are at risk from many emotional and behavioral factors. It was from this breakfast meeting that we committed to ourselves and Dakota that we would become part of the Gabriel’s’ Angel’s therapy team. Together the three of us engaged in the training of Dakota, the certification program as a therapy dog, and the necessary approval process within Gabriel’s Angels. Our diligence and commitment has paid off as we are now an official member of this remarkable organization and actively involved in helping young children at a local Boys and Girls club. What a remarkable and satisfying journey this has been and we look forward to a long term commitment in helping young children through the Gabriel’s Angels program and the passion it has for Arizona communities.
Started volunteering with Gabriel's Angels as a mother daughter team with National Charity League. Loved it so got a golden retriever puppy to train to be a therapy team. Guinnes turned a year old and we were certified and ready to go helping kids. We have served 3 different places in the last 2 years and ready to start our 4th working with teenage girls.
Guinness loves his work and so do I!
Originally, I intended to join Gabriel's Angels as a pet therapy team, but that didn't work out for me and my dog, Emma. Instead I'm a helping hand who joins a pet therapy team. Together the three of us visit a domestic violence shelter every other Saturday morning. We have an hour with the children. Every visit is different as there are usually new families seeking shelter and others who have moved on. What is the same each time is that there is at least one child who has a breakthrough moment in working with us and our therapy dog. It's truly amazing and special each visit.
I have been involved with Gabriel's Angels as a volunteer for over 2.5 years. During this time I have seen for myself the positive impact that the therapy teams have on the children. It is incredible the connection between a child and a dog. My dogs love working with the children and the children are so happy when we come to visit. The more we visit, the more their behavior improves. I have been so impressed with the organization that my husband and I have moved GA to the top of our list for charitable donations.
I am currently a Helping Hand Volunteer with Gabriel's Angels, and am working with a Bull-Mastiff Puppy named Charlie to become a Therapy Team. I love this organization and believe in their philosophy whole-heartedly! I grew up in a home where there was material wealth, but I was not safe or valued. Whenever I felt sad, scared, angry, or hurt, I would play with my dogs. They showed me unconditional love and joy. When we go to the Sojourner Center with "Petey", the Therapy Dog, I can relate to these precious children, who just want to feel safe, loved, and happy. Seeing "Petey" each week does this for these kids. You can see it in their eyes, and in their huge smiles when we walk through the door. The most rewarding moments are when one of the kids, who has been shy and afraid to interact with "Petey", finally trusts, and pets him. Each week, they trust a little more, and they come to love and trust "Petey", and are empathetic to him as well. The un-conditional love "Petey" brings to these kids will impact them and stay in their hearts always. ......I know,......it stayed in mine:)
My husband came home from work one day and told me about this organization that his emplyer supported. I was lookng for an opportunity to "make a difference" and this sounded like the perfect match for me! My love of animals and inherent belief that we must do something to stop the cycle of violence and abuse drew me to Gabrie's Angels. In the short time (1 year) that I have been a volunteer, I know that my dog Bella has touched the lives of many children. What I wasn't prepared for was how strong of an impact the children have made on me. Their smiles, hugs and laughter when they see Bella and I walk through the door make my day! I am proud to be a part of Gabriel's Angels and the incredible work they do in our community.
I have been with Gabriel's Angels for over 4 years with Chelsea, my Delta Society registered Golden Retriever. We have visited abused and at risk teen girls who have been removed from their families and are pregnant or just had babies. We bring them unconditional love and "show up" in their life. Chelsea and I will become involved as part a new Crisis team and am honored to do so.
Each week is a different and very personal experience. My pup and I are so happy to have the opportunity visit.
Gabriel's Angel has united many teams like us with great children, making sure each interaction is a good fit and supplies the correct training to enable its volunteers to be effective.
I hope that Gabriel's Angels will continue to forge into new areas allowing it's teams to grow and remain engaged as they always have.
Chelsea's Motto: The best place in the world is next to someone who loves you!