Julia Chapin Bozzo has been on an equestrian crusade for 20 years. She founded NorthWest Therapeutic Riding Center in 1993, and has overseen its Equine-Assisted Activities and Therapies (EAAT) programs since day one, fostering a welcoming, nurturing environment for riders with disabilities such as autism, Down syndrome, multiple sclerosis, and brain injuries. Adhering to the strict guidelines set forth by PATH Intl. (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International), her facility leverages the healing power of horses to enrich the well-being of riders of all ages. Whether they're toddlers or seniors, each participant reaps the physical, mental, emotional, and social rewards of riding with the center’s gentle horses—gaining strength and coordination, interacting with the natural world, and, most importantly, building self-esteem. Thanks to Julia’s efforts and the assistance of certified riding instructors and a 30-strong team of weekly volunteers, the center conducts more than 950 lessons annually, each individually tailored to the rider’s therapeutic goals.
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Through its Monroe Service Dog Partnership, Summit Assistance Dogs recruits inmates at the Monroe Correctional Complex to help increase its capacity to train service dogs. After being taught extensively in the art of animal training, carefully screened and supervised inmates work in pairs during two months of dog training, during which they help to groom, exercise, and train dogs from shelters, all the while evaluating the animals’ progress and temperament. In turn, the participating inmates get an opportunity to serve the community, take on new responsibilities, and earn incentives for good behavior. Summit Assistance Dogs funds training staff and prison administration time, as well as training equipment and treats for the dogs.
Though it’s only been open less than one year, Supernal Arts has already amassed an impressive cache of art in its private gallery. Paintings burst from their canvases in the form of an impressionist-style bouquet of red and white roses, a riverbed dotted with copper-hued stones and cascading water, and a wintry forest full of stark, bare trees. Visitors to the space can peruse paintings or take one of the many classes that teach the skills needed to craft such pieces. The instructors, all experienced artists themselves, harness their backgrounds and skills to lead students of all ages toward their own artistic goals, such as becoming a professional painter or exhibiting works somewhere other than inside the lion cage of the local zoo.
Save-A-Mutt began as Scrub-A-Mutt, an annual dog-wash event held each August to raise money for pet rescue. In the years since its first bubbly bash, however, the organization has expanded into finding homes for Craig's List pets, saving puppies from high-kill shelters, and providing medical care for dogs. Yet, Save-A-Mutt's methods are different from those of many other organizations dedicated to ending puppy mills. Seeing the high rate of euthanasia in LA County?nearly 35,000 pets were euthanized in the 2013?2014 fiscal year alone?Co-Directors Jennifer and Elizabeth rescue many of their pets from these high-kill shelters and transport them up to King County for spay/neuter surgery and adoption.
In addition to the annual dog wash, which still happens every year, Save-A-Mutt runs Dogtober Fest in the fall and PoochFest in the spring. Proceeds from the events go to benefit local rescues such as Old Dog Haven, the Everett Animal Shelter, and The NOAH Center.
Today, ?1,141 of the 5,487 mammals on Earth are threatened with extinction.? But collective efforts and targeted conservation can help save them. Conservationists Gord and Yvonne Blankstein truly believe in these restorative efforts, and they founded Mountain View Conservation & Breeding Centre in 1986 to help rare and exotic species breed, learn calculus, and return to the wild. From its 300-acre campus in the Fraser Valley, Mountain View safeguards several species, including some of the most endangered wildlife species in British Columbia?the Northern spotted owl and the Vancouver Island marmot?along with 35 species of exotic birds breeding at the conservatory. Once animals can survive, staff members return them to their natural habitats around North America. Mountain View also sponsors educational tours of its facility to raise awareness about conserving wildlife and natural habitats.