A Letter from Cathy Carilli,
Founder of The Tower of Hope
With your support we continue to work tirelessly to fulfill the mission of The Tower of Hope. Our primary focus is on helping combat wounded veterans, many of whom are returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan as single and double limb amputees, lead more independent and fulfilling lives. Because of advancements in critical care and trauma surgery, we are thankfully able to save more battlefield lives than ever before. Once a life is saved its purpose and direction needs to be restored. For what is a body without a spirit? You have both restored lives and lifted spirits through your donations to The Tower of Hope.
We are currently working with ten service dog training facilities nationwide, and are in the process of evaluating several more. We only fund service dogs that are trained by facilities that have been critically evaluated and accredited by ADI (Assistance Dogs International, the recognized authority in accrediting training facilities). Most training facilities are restricted to the number of service dogs they can allocate, which is why we work with as many qualified facilities as we can.
Training each dog involves over 18 months of "hands on" human interaction. This is just one of the hurdles that stand between injured veterans and the tools they need to fully recover. To help address this bottleneck, The Tower of Hope has become a key supporter of Paws for Purple Hearts, a program that trains veterans with PTSD to become trainers of service dogs. This program keeps veterans involved from the moment the puppies are born, right up until they are handed off to a veteran in need. It is amazing the healing power a tiny puppy can have when held in the arms of a recovering soldier.
The recovering veterans I meet have no regrets about serving their country, and indeed, many of them want to go back to these war-torn lands to help make better lives for others. Their selflessness in the face of extreme physical and emotional pain is monumental, and it inspires us to continue our efforts to support their needs.
The men and women we have provided a service dog to are incredibly humbled by the generosity you have shown them. Your positive life-changing gift is literally what enables them to get up and out every day. Because of you these young men and women can go to college or to work so that they can take care of themselves and their families. I can assure you that your donations to The Tower of Hope have made a huge difference in the quality of life for those who have sacrificed so much for all of us. On their behalf, I humbly thank you for your great generosity.