06-24-20

Pay It Forward – Tail Wags and Book Bags

 

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed life as we know it for everyone around the world. Easterns Automotive Group and Fox 5 DC have been working to highlight and donate to people in need through their Pay It Forward campaign. Over the past few months, they have given back to essential/frontline workers, hospital staff, and doctors + nurses. However, there is one group that they have yet to highlight which is children. Kids aren’t always the first that come to mind but they too have been severely impacted by coronavirus. They went from attending school every day, playing sports, and seeing their friends to being homebound. Students started to take classes online which is completely different. Adapting to remote learning can be difficult especially for those that may have learning disabilities.

Tailwags and Bookbags is a Washington D.C. based nonprofit dedicated to enhancing the educational, emotional, and social well-being of students providing highly trained assistance dogs and handlers to schools. They have a Labrador Retriever facility service dog named Bingo that the students love working with. Prior to COVID-19, Karin Hemphill of Tailwags and Bookbags would take Bingo to classrooms as a support system to students. They’ve since had to make home visits to students with a statewide lockdown in effect and schools closed.

Although Bingo is a great help, the organization is in need of another K9 to help them meet the needs of all the students during this busy summer. Fox 5 DC cameras met Hemphill and Bingo and they were joined by Allison Seymour of Fox 5 DC via satellite. Easterns Automotive Group got word of their incredible work in the community and decided to help out. Hemphill received a surprise visit from Sarah Bassam, wife of Easterns CEO Robert Bassam along with her son Ameen. Mrs. Bassam presented Hemphill with a $7,000 check for Tagwails and Bookbags to help them cover the cost of a new service facility dog. Bingo has visited Ameen’s school before so they have a personal connection to this cause. If you would like to learn more about Tailwags and Bookbags and their wonderful work, please visit www.tailwags.org

 

If you know someone in the DC, Maryland, and Virginia area that goes above and beyond the call and is worthy of being recognized, Click here to nominate them.

 

Watch the video to see the way everything unfolded.

 

YouTube Link – https://youtu.be/BiaAqK1gJvk

Link to original post – https://www.fox5dc.com/news/pay-it-forward-assistance-dogs-provide-children-with-emotional-support

 


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