Editor’s note: Josh is a member of the Mount Beauty & District Men’s Shed and the committee is keen to help his cause, i.e. ‘Dogs for Diggers Program’, hence this message to encourage members to donate.
Click [HERE] to donate.
Hi my name is Josh and I am raising funds for 15 rescued dogs to become Assistance Dogs to support our serving and ex-serving Australian Defence Force members who are dealing with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders (PTSD)
I am a returned servicemen who served in Afghanistan. I deployed three times over a period of four years and needless to say, this was extremely tough on myself and my young family. After returning from deployment I realised that I was not coping, and after my wife expressed her concerns, I decided to get help. In August 2013 I was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as well as major depression. This sent our world into a spin.
In February 2014 my wife made a phone call to the founder of Young Diggers and enquired about the dogs for diggers program. We were unsure of the process that was involved in getting a digger dog but we felt that the question needed to be asked. We were informed that I met the criteria to receive a dog and so the application process began.
In October 2014 I was medically discharged from the Army after almost 10 years of service. Thankfully, soon after, I received my little miracle. Lucky came into our family in early December 2014. He is now my assistance dog and goes everywhere with me. He is trained to help me when my anxiety goes up or when I am feeling overwhelmed.
I am fundraising for Young Diggers because they have changed not only mine, but my family’s life. This organisation is run only by volunteers, with all donations going to support injured veterans. What I would like to see is a larger foot print and a greater awareness of this wonderful organisation around Australia.
This is where I NEED YOUR HELP…. PLEASE DONATE AND SHARE ‘MY CAUSE’
Many people don’t understand the importance of an assistance dog for mental illness so I would like to make people aware. Lucky has changed my life for the better and this has a wonderful flow on affect for my family, my friends and my local community. He identifies if I’m depressed and crying, and will lick my face until I tell him its OK. He can also Identify if I am having an anxiety attack and will guide me to a quiet place.
I would love to give this gift to other veterans.
Please help me fundraise enough money to save 15 dogs, and put them through training under the Young Diggers program. The cost is $2,500 per dog, I would love to see 15 dogs for 15 diggers in 2015.
Check out the Young Diggers Website. Click [HERE]