The Henry Viscardi School’s Welcomes Long Island’s  First School Facility Dog from The Guide Dog Foundation

The Guide Dog Foundation and The Viscardi Center invites you to join in welcoming Long Island’s first school Facility Dog, Sunny, on Wednesday, September 25th from 11 AM – 12:30 PM at the Henry Viscardi School at the Viscardi Center in Albertson, New York. 

The Viscardi Center’s President and CEO John D. Kemp will host the celebration and will discuss the placement of Sunny at the school. Guide Dog Foundation President and CEO John Miller will speak about Sunny’s unique upbringing and training to be placed as a school facility dog. The Henry Viscardi School at The Viscardi Center’s Head of School Angelo Zegarelli, and students Adryana and Amaechi, will discuss how Sunny has made an impact on their lives since school has been in session along with a demonstration of Sunny’s skills.  

Sunny joined the staff as a Facility Dog at the Henry Viscardi School at The Viscardi Center in Albertson, New York in June 2019. His daily tasks include greeting/goodbyes with students as they start/end the day, motivating students during physical and speech therapy sessions, providing a safe and non-judgmental partner during reading activities, pushing power door buttons, walking with students as a reward, and acting as a social and emotion learning tool to assist children in managing stress and understanding emotions, empathy, goals, and relationships. 

About the Guide Dog Foundation
For more than 70 years, the Guide Dog Foundation for the Blind, Inc. (www.GuideDog.org), has trained and placed guide and service dogs to provide independence, enhanced mobility, and companionship to people who are blind, have low vision, or have other special needs. The Guide Dog Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization serving clients from across the United States and Canada. The Foundation relies on contributions from generous individuals, corporations, service clubs, and foundations to fund its mission to serve people with disabilities. It costs over $50,000 to breed, raise, train, and place one assistance dog, but the Guide Dog Foundation provides its services completely free of charge to the individual.  Its sister organization, America’s VetDogs, trains and provides guide, service, and hearing dogs for disabled veterans and first responders. The Guide Dog Foundation was the first assistance dog school in the United States to be accredited by both the International Guide Dog Federation and Assistance Dogs International.
About The Viscardi Center
Founded by Dr. Henry Viscardi, Jr., who served as disability advisor to eight U.S. Presidents and became one of the world’s leading advocates, The Viscardi Center educates, employs, and empowers people with disabilities. It provides Pre-K through High School education, school-to-work youth transition services, vocational training, career counseling and employment placement, assistive technology, and adapted driver education to children, adolescents, and adults with a wide variety of disabilities. The Center also assists businesses in diversifying their workforces, as well as developing and advancing disability inclusive cultures in their workplaces. More at ViscardiCenter.org