Canines for Disabled Kids (CDK) Awards First Scholarship in Partnership with Good Dogg Beverage Matching Seven-Year-Old Girl with Rare Disease with Trained Service Dog
Asher Waldrop is the first recipient of this unique scholarship, which helps children with rare diseases gain independence with the help of specially trained service dogs.
May 11, 2022 – (Melbourne, FL) – Good Dogg Beverage and Canines for Disabled Kids (CDK) announced Asher Waldrop of Mechanicsville, VA as the recipient of the first CDK Good Dogg scholarship recipient through its newly founded partnership. The scholarship is the first major step in establishing a partnership between CDK and Good Dogg Beverage that will directly impact the lives of children with rare diseases through Good Dogg’s Leverage the Beverage™ program.
Thanks to the scholarship, Asher, 7, who has a suspected Mitochondrial Disease, was able to complete the fundraising for her match to Gatsby, a trained medical alert and response service dog, who supports Asher’s mobility, alerts to oncoming nausea and pain spikes, provides pain-relieving pressure, and retrieves medications and assistance in case of an emergency.
“Asher is a brave kid,” says Asher’s mother, Ka’ea Waldrop. “She’s been through a lot and has so much to offer the world. Gatsby gives Asher more independence and room to grow.”
Asher’s family found Gatsby through Eyes Ears Nose and Paws (EENP), one of only a few nonprofit programs equipped to train service dogs for children with complex medical needs like Asher’s. EENP provides a generous scholarship towards the nearly $40,000 it can cost to train a service dog. But, Asher’s family still needed to fund a balance of $20,000 while also covering the costs to attend weeks of in-person training several hours from their home – all before Gatsby graduated from the training program.
Luckily, Asher’s mom met Kristin Hartness, executive director of Canines for Disabled Kids (CDK), a nonprofit organization that provides education and scholarships to increase the number of children accepted for service dogs. Hartness was just finalizing the application for the funds designed to provide families of children with rare diseases funding for service dogs through its partnership with Good Dogg Beverage.
The scholarship is funded through CDKs existing program, in conjunction with Good Dogg’s Leverage the Beverage™ program, which allocates a portion of every sale of Good Dogg’s recently released line of premium hard seltzers to ensure families facing rare diseases have access to trained service dogs through CDK.
“CDK’s scholarship model is making service dogs more accessible to kids who need them,” says Tony Venturoso, CEO and Founder of Good Dogg Beverage. “We are proud that the unique partnership we have established with CDK will give more kids like Asher, who are facing rare diseases, the assistance and independence that service dogs provide.”
Andrew Parry, Director of Marketing for Good Dogg is a licensed physical therapist assistant who has worked directly with kids in the rare disease community. He has seen first-hand the impact service dogs can have. “With stacked caseloads, we could only help kids for a few hours a week in therapy, often with little to no progress, or even regression between sessions,” says Parry. “These dogs are helping kids around the clock. There’s nothing better than seeing Asher, with the help of Gatsby, do the things every kid should have the chance to do.”
To learn more about the CDK and Good Dogg Beverage partnership, visit www.gooddoggbeverage.com.
About Good Dogg Beverage
Good Dogg Beverage is a purpose-driven, premium seltzer brand on a mission to make a difference in the lives of others through their Leverage the Beverage™ program. The company gives a portion of every sale of its hard seltzer and 100% of the profits of its merchandise sales to ensure children with rare diseases have access to service dogs.
Good Dogg Premium Hard Seltzer, The Official Hard Seltzer of Dog Lovers™, comes in four flavors: Orange Mango, Black Cherry, Cucumber Lime, and Dragonfruit. Good Dogg seltzers have 90 calories, 0 carbs, 0 sugar, and are 4.5% ABV. Visit gooddoggbeverage.com to learn more about how you can join Good Dogg on its mission to Leverage the Beverage™.
About Canines for Disabled Kids
Canines for Disabled Kids (CDK) increases independence for children with disabilities and their families through the use of service dogs by creating partnerships, understanding, and awareness throughout the community. Since 1998, CDK has sponsored over 300 service dogs to help children with different disabilities.