Saturday, September 18, 2010

Witnessing the American Spirit in Our Volunteers

The Engles,
CCT Team of the Year

During one of the most severe economic crises of our lifetime, while many Americans are facing extreme hardship, losing jobs, homes and businesses, the American spirit is alive and well.  Americans have responded to this crisis by serving.  Approximately 1.6 million more volunteers served in 2009 than in 2008, making this the largest single-year increase in the number of volunteers since 2003.  This number is taken directly from the 2010 Volunteering in America report  published  by the Corporation for National and Community Service.   View the full report here.    Volunteerism lives in the heart of Americans.  It is what unites us as a nation and demonstrates America's strong sense of community.  Our desire to work together and help others is the very foundation of our country and one of the main reasons our country is the greatest nation on earth.  We are so proud of our volunteers and the work they do to serve the mission of Carolina Canines.  Simply put, we could not function without you.  Thank you for your selfless giving , endless dedication and faith in our organization. 
The Stoners,
CCT Team of the Year
Sponsored by the Board of Directors, on September 18th we gathered together for the annual Volunteer Appreciation Picnic. Sharing our success, because of the commitment of our Volunteers, we celebrated the people who give an average of 2500 hours each month as foster puppy parents raising service dogs to give someone greater independence, office and event volunteers, Carolina Canines for Therapy (CCT) teams in Wilmington and Raleigh and our corporate sponsors that come together to make each piece a part of the whole.  Today was a day to share in friendships new and old, human and canine and to celebrate the service of others.  A special thanks to the Board of Directors for arranging, organizing and serving the food catered by Angie's of Chris's Restaurant

Laura Kranchalk presenting
Caroline O'Brien
Overall Volunteer of the Year

Acknowledging our Volunteers is always a special time.  Each year, we look back on the work of our volunteers and we recognize just a few who have stood above the crowd and served above and beyond.  This year, we had the privilege of honoring some special people.    A few of the volunteers recognized were Katherine and Walter Engle and therapy dog Simeon and Nanc and Joe Stoner with Sarah and Hannah as Carolina Canines for Therapy Volunteers of the Year and Caroline O'Brien as Overall Volunteer of the Year.  It is a pleasure to share the blessings these folks are in our community and to our organization. 
Today, it was our honor to serve you.  Thank you.

(Photos by Glenn Blackwood)

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Carolina Canines for Veterans 2010 Newman's Own Award Recipient

General James Cartwright, Vice-Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff Presents Awards in Pentagon Ceremony

General James Cartwright, USMC, Vice-Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, provided remarks at the eleventh annual Newman's Own Award Ceremony at the Pentagon on September 1, 2010, as awards totaling $75,000 were presented to eight non-profit organizations for their innovative programs to improve military quality of life.

Carolina Canines for Veterans was a $10,000 award recipient of the 2010 Newman's Own Award. In 2008, CCFS launched a national program, Carolina Canines for Veterans, to assist wounded warriors with a quality trained service dog using military prisoners to train the dogs rescued from local shelters. Operating entirely on private donations, CCFS trains military prisoners to raise and train each service dog. While there are other service dog training programs for wounded warriors, Carolina Canines for Veterans is the first of its kind to work within the walls of a military prison making it unique in the United States. This is the second year that Carolina Canines for Veterans has received the Newman's Own Award.

Newman's Own, Fisher House Foundation, and Military Times Media Group sponsored the competition, which seeks to reward ingenuity and innovation for programs that benefit service men and women and their families. The challenge is straightforward: "Present an innovative plan to improve the quality of life for the military community and receive funding to carry out the plans."

General Cartwright was joined by Tom Indoe, President of Newman's Own; Fisher House Foundation trustee Tammy Fisher; and a representative from Military Times Media Group, in presenting the awards.

Including this year's awards, the annual competition that began in 1999 has recognized 133 programs with awards totaling $650,000.

A total of 138 entries were received for the 2010 program. Six judges evaluated each entry based on the organization's impact to the respective communities, creativity and innovation.