The Don’t You Want Me Project - providing hope and support through a first of its kind Rescue Grant! Starting first in TORONTO! Read on.....
Reuben, Luna and Jaz by Deb Klein
Last November the Project announced the launch of the Don't You Want Me Rescue Grant, bourne from a collaboration with the UK's Wild at Heart Foundation. The Grant will enable someone from the queer and trans community (one person in Toronto and one in the U.K) who is struggling with mental health issues, the opportunity to adopt a rescue dog and to provide ongoing support.
The DYWM Rescue Grant aims to provide a complete practical and emotional toolkit to help transform the life of the individual who receives it. We’re keen to ensure that this grant helps to markedly improve the mental health of a recipient who we've determined - with the help of our mental health partner organizations - would benefit from dog ownership on many levels, and who has always yearned for the companionship of a dog but could never afford one.
The grant also aims to remove some of the traditional blockers LGBTQ+ people may face when considering taking on the responsibility of adopting a dog. Queer and trans people are more likely to be discriminated against either in the workplace or in the recruitment process, and job security can therefore prove to be a stumbling block. By providing support towards the cost of dog ownership, the DYWM Rescue Grant seeks to make it easier for the recipient to provide a responsible home for their beloved new companion whilst also allowing them to make important career choices unfettered by the need to provide round-the-clock care.
As we've witnessed throughout the project, it is anticipated that the arrival of the rescue dog will have a profoundly transformative impact not only on the recipient's mental health but on every aspect of their life. Approximately half of the Project’s participants have said that their rescue dog saved their life.
We want to take this opportunity the thank our amazing TORONTO PARTNERS AND SPONSORS!
FRIENDS OF RUBY - Mental Health PartnerFriends of Ruby is a Toronto registered charity dedicated to the progressive wellbeing of LGBTQI2S youth (aged 16-29) through mental health services, social services and housing. Friends of Ruby will help determine a suitable recipient for the DYWM Rescue Grant and will provide ongoing mental health support as the recipient welcomes the rescue dog into their life.
SAVE OUR SCRUFF - Rescue Partner Founded by one of our Project participants, SOS, a non-profit organization in Toronto is dedicated to rescuing dogs and finding them safe and suitable permanent homes through adoption, advocacy and education. SOS will work closely with Friends of Ruby to match a suitable rescue dog with the chosen recipient of the DYWM Rescue Grant, waive their adoption fee and provide ongoing support. If deemed beneficial, SOS will assist the grant recipient in working towards training their dog to be a therapy/service dog.
NOOD PET FOOD:NOOD recipes are packed with ethically sourced proteins, superfoods and a range of vitamins and minerals to provide a complete and balanced diet for your pet. NOOD believe every pet -- big and small — deserves the proper nutrition to live a healthy, happy life. And every single pet owner deserves to know what goes in (and what stays out) of the pet food they buy. No junk, no nasty surprises, no pesky fine print. NOOD is working to close the gap on pet food inequality and to make affordable pet food accessible to all. Nood Pet Food is donating 3 years worth of food to the grant recipient.
DOGGY DATES TORONTO: Doggy Dates Toronto is a trans owned, award winning dog walking and photography business founded by Jack and Jet Jackson. Doggy Dates Toronto will be providing dog walking services and documenting the journey of the grant recipient and their rescue dog through photo journalism.
BALMY BEACH PET HOSPITAL:Dr. Singh comes from a traditional “Sikh” family. The word Sikh means student. To this end, Dr. Singh has devoted her life to honing her skills as a Veterinary practitioner, to continue to provide the best medicine and care to her patients. Her goals as a practitioner are to provide affordable and professional veterinary care, maintain the highest level of transparency, and practice in an environment that is safe for pets, pet owners and staff. BALMY BEACH will be donating 50% of the cost of vet services.
SMALL WONDERS: Small Wonders is Toronto's landmark original independent pet supply shop. They carry a large selection of unique items, including many locally-made treats and toys. Their selection of foods is carefully thought-out, offering only the best for your four-legged companions! They're donating $20 worth of dog treats a month to our grant recipient.
DOGTOPIA: Dogtopia of Bloor West Village in Toronto is your dog’s home away from home. The brand new dog boarding facility, owned by Jen McCain, makes your dog’s everyday like it’s the most exciting day ever! Through dog daycare, boarding, training and spa services they are committed to showering your pup with all the love and affection they deserve when you can’t be with them. Dogtopia Bloor West are donating grooming, dog training and job shadowing if desired.