Skyjack funds canine support
By Euan Youdale12 November 2015
Skyjack has donated $10,000 to help fund facility expansions at a New York, USA-based organisation which educates dogs to help people with disabilities.
Carrie Picard, director of marketing and communications for non-profit Educated Canines Assisting with Disabilities (ECAD), said, “We are really grateful that Skyjack selected ECAD as one of the 30 projects they are supporting to celebrate its 30th business anniversary. The donation will help towards our goal of doubling our facility and dog training capacity by 2020.”
Established in 1995, ECAD has placed 225 assistance dogs in over 20 US states. ECAD heard about the 30 For 30 Partners campaign through long-time Skyjack customer United Rentals, the largest equipment rental company in the world.
“We have partnered with Skyjack for many years and we were happy to help connect them with ECAD, especially when it’s for a good cause,” said Craig Pintoff, senior vice president, human resources for United Rentals headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut.
Every year, the charity matches around 20 dogs with individuals living with disabilities. Right now, ECAD has 60 dogs in training. “Currently, there’s a two-year wait list for one of our service dogs, which is why we launched a $7 million capital campaign in hopes of expanding our facilities in Torrington in phases,” Picard said. “Eventually we hope to have about 20,000 square feet of space to house training and breeding facilities.”
Each dog receives 1,500 hours of training over two years before they are placed. All dogs learn a basic routine of 89 commands and then receives specialised training depending on the individual’s need.
Over the nonprofit’s 20-year history, it has educated dogs to assist with over 50 different disabilities. “We once assisted a wheelchair bound girl with muscular dystrophy attend college with a little more independence,” Picard said. “We educated the dog to pick up, drop and adjust a cell phone’s location so she could make calls without needing human assistance.”
ECAD has also educated dogs to alert caretakers when medical devices malfunction and need attention.
In celebration of 30 years in business, Skyjack’s 30 For 30 Partners campaign is supporting 30 different charitable projects around the world.