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Rusty & Veela

    We often talk about the incredible impact your support has on the lives of children with disabilities. Today, we want to share with you a story that exemplifies the transformative power of your generosity and how it directly touches the lives of those we serve. It is through the unwavering support of donors like you that these stories of triumph and resilience become possible.

    “They say it takes a village to raise a child and that is even more true for raising a child with special needs.  As a family, we have been blessed with a large and compassionate village in raising both of our children.  Our oldest son, Rusty, was diagnosed with ASD in 2008.  Since then, it has been a roller coaster of emotions with further diagnoses, therapy, intervention, doctor’s appointments, IEP’s, Special Education, educational modifications and the like.  However, in 2019, we were introduced to Veela.  Since then, she has been an absolute asset to our ongoing journey with Rusty.  

    Veela and 4 Paws for Ability have been an absolute answer to many prayers. We can now go out in public confident in the knowledge that Rusty can no longer elope. In addition, Veela helps Rusty remain calm in public situations, and she helps him interact better with those around him.

    This school year, 2022-2023, was Rusty’s senior year of high school.  While Veela does not attend school with Rusty, she participates in many activities with him, and this year has brought about several exciting events in which Rusty was able to participate only because he had Veela by his side.  In April, they attended the senior prom together.  They even got out on the dance floor with the full support of students and faculty!  In May, Rusty graduated and Veela was welcomed to participate in graduation pictures!  In addition, Rusty was recognized as a graduating senior in church and Veela was recognized right along with him.  The church we attend, who is another part of our ‘village’ even made a donation in Rusty’s honor to 4 Paws for Ability as part of this recognition.

    Veela and 4 Paws for Ability have enriched our lives in so many ways.  Most importantly, they have helped us add to our family a member who is not only an asset, but a very cherished addition.” 

    -Rusty’s Mother