Billie's Story

Billie was born wild in India in 1962. Shortly thereafter, in 1966, she was captured, separated from her family, and exported to Southwick Zoo in Mendon, MA. Like most Asian elephants arriving in America during this era, Billie was expected to spend the majority of her life performing and on exhibit. In 1972, Billie was sold to the Hawthorn Corporation, a company that trained and leased elephants to circuses.

Taylor's Story

Taylor StearnsADPKD, Living with PKD PKD has caused my family so much hardship. Growing up, I watched my mother suffer as her health declined. She was always in so much pain, never wanting to leave the house because she was so uncomfortable. Finally, at age 41 she was put on dialysis, and she was beginning to manage her symptoms better. About a month or so later, a massive aneurysm we didn’t know about ruptured in her brain, and after nine long days in the Neuro ICU, we decided to put her on comfort care, knowing her wishes.

40 Years Ago

Forty years ago, a grieving mother set into motion a national movement that has saved tens of thousands of lives. A drunk driver, out of jail just two days following his fourth drunk driving arrest, had struck and killed Candace Lightner’s 13-year-old daughter Cari as she walked to a church carnival with a friend.

Vijay's Story

PROJECT VIJAY When Vijay was born, he was not expected to live. His parents gave him loving care, but professional medical services were not affordable. He was bedridden until age 7, but then, through sheer determination, he began steadily improving, while continuing to have both physical and developmental challenges. In 2018, Disabled Children's Fund provided Vijay with an all-terrain pediatric wheelchair to enhance his ability to get around in the rural area where he lives.We named the initiative "Project Vijay" after him due to his winning personality and positive spirit.

Jason's Story

When Jason began working with the Vermont Legal Aid attorney at Safe Recovery, he was homeless and struggling to stay in treatment at the Chittenden Clinic. Following a referral from his case manager at Safe Recovery, his attorney successfully appealed a subsidized housing denial and ultimately was able to secure a housing voucher and supportive mental health services for Jason and his girlfriend. The voucher ended a 5-year period of homelessness for Jason—a period that led to countless police interactions and traumatic experiences that exacerbated his substance use disorder.

Controlling Animal Population

The single most important thing that we can do to save cats and dogs from all the suffering and death that their overpopulation causes is to spay and neuter them. Spay and neuter surgeries are routine, affordable surgeries that can prevent thousands of animals from being born, only to suffer and struggle to survive on the streets, be abused by cruel or neglectful people, or be euthanized in animal shelters for lack of a loving home. Spaying and neutering makes a big difference: Just one unaltered female dog and her offspring can produce 67,000 puppies in only six years.

Carla's Story

Carla describes her visit to a Challenger Learning Center in 6th grade as a life-changing experience that "definitely influenced the direction" of her career. Carla participated in a simulated space mission with her classmates. The mission gave Carla insight into a range of science, technology, and engineering roles and the opportunity to practice teamwork, communication, and creative problem solving - skills that are critical for today's careers. Carla says, "I enjoyed the atmosphere of being part of a team and doing something momentous.

Christian's Story

In April of 2009, Corporal Christian Brown joined the United States Marine Corps. He followed in the footsteps of his maternal grandfather, who served as a Commander in the Navy, and his paternal grandfather, who was an enlisted member of the Marine Corps. In December of 2009, he was deployed to Marjah, Afghanistan, during one of the most notable surges in OIF/OEF history. After safely returning home from his first deployment, he was once again deployed to Afghanistan in July of 2011.

Susan's Story

Susan suffered from a spinal cord injury and a serious head injury that left her unable to communicate. Through speech and physical therapy, Susan regained her ability to speak, but she knew she wouldn’t be able to return to her physically demanding job as a nurse. Susan learned about PAWS through a PAWS Demonstration at her local libary. She wasn’t sure how much a dog would help her, but she decided to apply. Soon after, Susan got her Assistance Dog, SABLE, a golden retriever.

Maggie's Journey

Home is where children take their first steps in life, where they discover love. It's the magical place where they learn to explore their world feeling safe, secure, and accepted. But five-year-old Maggie's journey started with an alarming realization: she was fifteen months, and still didn't respond to her name, hold eye contact, or play with toys. "As first-time parents, we were very scared," says Hannah, Maggie's mother.