- Todd and Jessica wanted to teach their son, who has autism, to interact with the world and become more independent.
- When Jessica met a dog trainer for rescued animals, they decided to get a service dog for Luke.
- But since getting one was so expensive, they decided to sell homemade brownies and raised the money needed in no time!
A couple who are both teachers from Odessa, Texas, know exactly what it’s like to work hard to achieve a goal that’s what they teach their son to become more independent!
Todd and Jessica Berridge’s son, Luke, has high-functioning autism (HFA). They have always wanted him to interact with the world and become more self-sufficient as he was getting older. They have been researching healthy ways to do it and finally, they found a great one!
One day, Jessica met Ricky Bedient — a trainer who transforms rescue dogs into service and therapy dogs. They brainstormed about Luke’s situation and in the end they agreed that having a large service dog of his own would help him very much!
“These dogs can absolutely help autistic kids calm down when they have that meltdown,” Ricky said. “The dogs can sense it and try to help. They can help with the anxiety.”
But, there was one problem they needed to solve: where should they get around $3,000 to $4,000 to buy trained Labradors?
They got creative with it and started selling their homemade brownies to raise the needed funds. It was a team effort: Natalie, Luke’s sister, made the batter while he baked it, their mom monitored the order and their dad made the deliveries.
Soon enough, the whole community rallied to help them with their project!
“Pardon the expression, but it just went viral,” Todd said. “People started donating. We had one person who wants to remain anonymous donate $1,800 toward the project. We had donations from friends and family, from strangers we didn’t know who happened to see the page on Facebook.”
Their neighbors bought many trays of brownies that were to be delivered for frontliners! Of course, they were so happy to do just that!
Two weeks after they started their fundraiser, they have already raised $4,000! Luke was so excited to have his own service dog!
This experience taught Luke the importance of working hard for something that you want to achieve!
Plus the support that their community gave them is just so inspiring!
Source: Inspire More