Meet my friend and hero, Donnie Kanter Winokur. Donnie and her husband adopted Iyal as a tiny tot, and as he grew, discovered he has Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder. Join her via video as she discusses what this beautiful young man and his family have had to deal with, and how a highly trained FASD service dog added a delightful dynamic to their lives.
If you've noticed fewer posts about one of my favorite nonprofits, 4 Paws for Ability, it is because they have found room in their budget for a new employee, Jessica Noll. Noll came on board the Ohio-based nonprofit a couple of months ago, and has been doing amazing things. Her title: Community/Media Relations Director. Says the 4 Paws site, "Award-winning and Emmy-nominated multimedia journalist Jessica Noll comes to 4 Paws straight from TV. She has a decade of newspaper/magazine journalism experience (in fact she got her start at the Centerville-Bellbrook Times), and two years in TV. She’s a writer, blogger, photographer, producer, editor, videographer, social networking guru, storyteller and dog lover!" What an honor to have been webmaster and also help many families with their online fundraising efforts by editing their articles and press releases. I learned more about the world of disabilities than I thought possible, and the parents of these children are the most superb people on Earth. To see the results from the combination of well-trained dog and disabled child has been breathtaking. It's been a great five-year ride, and I wish the best to these dedicated people who strive and sacrifice to enrich the lives of families touched by disabilities. Thanks to my many friends and colleagues who stood by the sidelines and cheered me on! And now, on to my next community service project(s)!