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Sharing Animal Wisdom @ Horizons4Girls

03 Dec 2014

This article was originally posted & generously shared by:  Barbara Techel  of Joyful Paws on . Click here to subscribe to Joyful Paws blog. 

Horizons4Girls…"at promise", not at risk… and we inspire their internal promise to fulfill their academic and personal goals."

I love that they say promote "at promise" instead of the negative picture "at risk" can paint, thus labeling these young ladies who can benefit greatly from a listening ear and inspiration from others.

It is my hope that is what Miss Gidget and I were able to do for them yesterday– inspire them and know they are not alone in their feelings and worries — that we all go through tough times and periods of doubt about who we are.

We volunteered an hour of our time as I shared a series of photos of the dogs I've had in my life — each one having taught me different lessons — and I shared those teachings with the special young ladies that were present Tuesday afternoon.

As I shared with them, we all learn in different ways — different lessons about life, and that I happened to learn some of my most valuable lessons from my animal companion friends.

One of the most personal stories I shared with them was how Frankie helped me to move past the shame I carried for years (into my 40s) the stigma I felt for never having the maternal instinct to want children of my own. I recalled one of the first times after visiting a school full of kids with Frankie, sharing with them her story of being in a wheelchair and persevering.

When I got out to my car after the presentation for the school kids, I cried. It was a joyful cry because in that moment I realized had I been a mom to my own kids, I may not have been able to do the work I was doing with Frankie at that time. I was meant to be a mentor in a special way to many kids because of my work with Frankie.

It is my hope by sharing that story that they will follow what is right for their hearts and not worry about what society may say they "should" do as they grow into young adults.

It was a delight to hear some of the girls share stories of their own pets (and photos!) and lessons they've learned from them. It was also a wonderful way in which to share a special connection between all of us and our animal friends.

Next Saturday, Gidget and I will be volunteering with the girls helping deliver cookies to the residents at an area nursing home. We will be going from room to room to bring joy and love to many which I'm really looking forward to.

There is still time to sponsor a dozen (or more) cookies if you'd like to help us reach our goal. We are almost there!  All you have to do is go to our support page by clicking HERE. Scroll down and on the left hand side you will see Gidget's sweet face and that is where you can sponsor cookies. Thanks for considering!

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Barbara Techel Gidget Horizons4Girls Joyful Paws mentoring

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