Wallis Brozman may use a wheelchair, but it does not limit her mobility.
utilize a wheelchair-accessible BraunAbility Chrysler Pacifica for greater mobility and independence. Additionally, with her service dog Mork from Canine Companions for Independence, she has extra confidence leaving her house.
“Without Mork by my side, I don’t feel safe going out of the house,” said Brozman. “Through Mork, I have regained my independence.”
The partnership between Chrysler and BraunAbility not only has created a wheelchair-accessible Chrysler Pacifica minivan, but it also now includes co-promotion support for the “Give a Dog a Job Program” benefiting Canine Companions for Independence. This program will help others with disabilities gain greater independence with a service dog.
These trained service dogs assist wheelchair users by completing everyday activities, including getting in and out of their wheelchair-accessible vehicles.
For Brozman, Mork does so much more. He picks up her keys, understands sign language, helps pull her up the ramp and into her van and even “loves” the built-in vacuum in the Pacifica, which he can retrieve from its location inside the minivan.
“Not only does Mork shed like every other dog, he can actually help clean up after himself,” she said.
While these dogs provide an important service, it is a long and expensive process to train the dogs.
Two years of training for dogs like Mork costs $50,000. Once the dogs have completed their training, they are placed with their new owners free of charge. Brozman said there are 450 people on a waiting list for a dog.
The “Give a Dog a Job Program” looks to offset those costs. Brozman said it’s an online fundraising and awareness campaign that will have a positive impact on the lives of adults, children and veterans with disabilities.
“The funds raised in this program will allow us to place more exceptional assistance dogs like Mork with more people like me,” said Brozman. “Mork is my independence on four legs. He’s my big goofy guy and I absolutely love him for that.”
For more information about the “Give a Dog Job Program,” or to donate, visit the Canine Companions for Independence website.